Klement, B.J., J. van Twest, R.A. Staudenmaier, H. Brittain, and B.S. Spooner. 1997. The use of reduced temperatures for reversible developmental arrest of organ cultures prior to spaceflight experimentation and for postflight analyses. In "Space Technology and Applications International Forum; Second Conference on Commercial Development of Space" (Mohamed S. EI-Genk, ed.), Amer. Inst. Physics Press, Woodbury, New York, pp. 933-938.
One complication of using rapidly growing and developing tissues for spaceflight experimentation is that, due to early turnover and launch delays, the tissues often undergo complete development before orbit is achieved. We conducted a series of studies using three different types of tissue, chick pre-cardiac explants, embryonic mouse lung rudiments and embryonic mouse pre-metatarsal mesenchyme, to examine the use of reduced temperature as an inexpensive means to slow growth and development, before the experiment begins. Pre-cardiac explants could be held at 4oC (277K), 13oC (286K), or 22oC (295K) for up to 48 hours and still begin normal beating within 24 hours of culture at 37oC (310K). Lung explants could be held at 5oC (278K), 15oC (288K), and 24oC (297K) for 3-6 days without clefts changing in appearance, but would resume branching morphogenesis and growth after being placed at 37oC (310K). Pre-metatarsal cultures could be held at 15oC (288K), 22oC (295K) and 24oC (297K) for 6 days with very little change in rod length. After additional incubation at 37oC (310K) the rods increased in length and mineralized. These results suggest that incubation at temperatures below standard culture temperature are capable of slowing tissue growth, but growth and development will resume after standard incubation.
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