Examination of the cytotoxicity of DMSO to post-cryopreserved hematopoietic progenitor cells as evaluated by methylcellulose culture assays

Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Medical Laboratory Science

First Advisor's Name

Jerry Bash

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Sylvia Smith

Third Advisor's Name

Bruce A. Lenes

Date of Defense



Cryopreserved autologous progenitor cells are usually infused quickly due to previously published papers demonstrating direct dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) cytotoxicity. Recently two published papers questioned the toxicity of DMSO. The purpose of this thesis was to evaluate the cytotoxicity of DMSO to progenitor cells by 1) methycellulose culture assays; colony forming unit-granulocyte macrophage (CFU-GM) and burst forming uniterythroid (BFU-E), 2) trypan blue viability, and 3) nucleated cell recovery. Calculations of total progenitor cell content and % cell survival were also evaluated. In vitro data, (n = 8), indicated no significant cytotoxicity associated with up to one hour of DMSO incubation, except nucleated cell recovery. However, incubation of greater than two hours revealed significant abnormalities in mean trypan blue viability (TBV), mean CFUGM and mean BFU-E assays. In conclusion, measurable toxicity appears to be dependent on the time of incubation with DMSO; with short incubation times showing little toxicity and longer incubation times showing significant toxicity by in vitro studies.



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