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Fluorescent probes as a tool for cell population tracking in spontaneously active neural networks derived from human pluripotent stem cells

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-96
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience Methods
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2013
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


Applications such as 3D cultures and tissue modelling require cell tracking with non-invasive methods. In this work, the suitability of two fluorescent probes, CellTracker, CT, and long chain carbocyanine dye, DiD, was investigated for long-term culturing of labeled human pluripotent stem cell-derived neural cells. We found that these dyes did not affect the cell viability. However, proliferation was decreased in DiD labeled cell population. With both dyes the labeling was stable up to 4 weeks. CT and DiD labeled cells could be co-cultured and, importantly, these mixed populations had their normal ability to form spontaneous electrical network activity. In conclusion, human neural cells can be successfully labeled with these two fluorescent probes without significantly affecting the cell characteristics. These labeled cells could be utilized further in e.g. building controlled neuronal networks for neurotoxicity screening platforms, combining cells with biomaterials for 3D studies, and graft development.

ASJC Scopus subject areas


  • CellTracker, Co-culture, DiD, Fluorescent probe, Human stem cell derived neural cells, Labeling, Long term