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Alternatives to Laboratory Animals - ATLA

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Electrical Stimulation of Transforming Growth Factor-β1 Secretion by Human Dermal Fibroblasts and the U937 Human Monocytic Cell Line


Ian Todd, Richard H. Clothier, Mary L. Huggins, Nishma Patel, K. Clare Searle, Santhini Jeyarajah, Lionel Pradel and Karen L. Lacey

The in vitro effects on human dermal fibroblasts and the U937 human monocytic cell line of three phases of electrical microcurrents generated by the ACE Stimulator were investigated. The growth and viability of growing and confluent dermal fibroblasts were not directly influenced by the separate microcurrent phases. One form of microcurrent (designated phase 1) stimulated both dermal fibroblasts and U937 cells to secrete transforming growth factor-ß1 (TGF-ß1)which is an important regulator of cell-mediated inflammation and tissue regeneration, but none of the three phases stimulated secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 by U937 cells. The stimulation of TGF-β1 secretion in these experiments was not dramatic (a median increase over control levels of 20–30%), although it could be biologically significant.