A non-invasive method to characterize human mesenchymal stromal cells during adipogenic differentiation was developed for the first time. Seven fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs), including methyl laurate, methyl myristate, methyl palmitate, methyl linoleate, methyl oleate, methyl elaidate and methyl stearate, were used for characterizing adipogenic differentiation using headspace solid-phase microextraction (HS-SPME) which is a very simple and non-invasive method for the extraction of volatile compounds. Glassware was used for culturing mesenchymal stromal cells rather than the common plasticware to minimize contamination by volatile impurities. The optimal SPME fiber was selected by comparing diverse fibers containing two pure liquid polymers (PDMS and PA) and two porous solids (PDMS/DVB and CAR/PDMS). Using optimized procedures, we discovered that seven FAMEs were only detected in adipogenic differentiated mesenchymal stromal cells and not in the mesenchymal stromal cells before differentiation. These data could support the quality control of clinical mesenchymal stromal cell culture in the pharmaceutical industry in addition to the development of many clinical applications using mesenchymal stromal cells.
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