Effects of ECM Proteins on Barrier Formation in Caco-2 Cells
4 September 2015

In vivo, several types of epithelial cells exhibit polarized morphology when fully mature. Enterocytes, the absorptive cells of the intestine, are one example of this type. Enterocytes are responsible for the uptake of material from the intestinal lumen, and it is the differential permeability of these cells to various materials that control absorption. The majority of studies being done on transport, infection and enzyme regulation utilize established intestinal epithelial cell lines, such as Caco-2 cells. This model has some disadvantages, including the requirement for medium supplementation with animal serum and the lengthy culture periods necessary to achieve an enterocyte-like differentiated phenotype. This application note demonstrates how ECM proteins and other key media components affect the rate at which Caco-2 cells differentiate.