Critical appraisal of the side population assay in stem cell and cancer stem cell research

Anna Golebiewska, Nicolaas H.C. Brons, Rolf Bjerkvig, Simone P. Niclou*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

256 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The "Side Population" (SP) discrimination assay is a flow cytometry method used to detect stem cells based on the dye efflux properties of ABC transporters. We discuss the SP assay and its applications in stem cell biology, with an emphasis on the technical challenges related to sample preparation, data acquisition, analysis, and interpretation. We highlight the value of multicolor phenotyping, the impact of DNA ploidy, and the importance of distinguishing graft versus host cells for an appropriate SP discrimination. To improve the consistency and reliability of data between laboratories, we propose a set of recommendations for SP assay data reporting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)136-147
Number of pages12
JournalCell Stem Cell
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Feb 2011

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