Animal Reproduction (AR)
Animal Reproduction (AR)
Original Article

Somatic feather follicle cell culture of the gallus domesticus species for creating a wild bird genetic resource bank

Camila Alampe Cardoso; Lina Castelo Branco Motta; Vanessa Cristina de Oliveira; Daniele dos Santos Martins

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Abstract: The creation of a genetic resource bank of avian species aims to prevent the decline and fragmentation of wild bird populations, which in turn lead to the loss of genetic diversity and, in more serious cases, the extinction of the most threatened species. In order for the collected genetic material to be stored in a bank and useful when necessary, it is essential to improve the technique ensuring its effectiveness. Thus, our study used feather follicle cells from the domestic gallus species to standardize the technique of cell culture and subsequent cryopreservation. This study aimed to establish a protocol, in vitro, of isolation and primary culture of somatic cells derived from the feather follicle, with the purpose of establishing a cell lineage, and evaluate its viability for the biobank formation. Developing feathers of gallus domesticus were collected at 12, 21 and 34 days of age. The feathers were morphologically analyzed and then we selected the region of the calamus due to the presence of pulp for cell culture and cryopreservation. The results showed that it is possible to find cells with distinct morphology; cells in elliptical shape with central nucleus also in elliptical shape, cells with shape and round nucleus, cells compatible with the fibers of the barbules, cell agglomerates and cells adhered to the bottom of the plate with fibroblastatoid shape. After 24 hours of culture there was the presence of primary culture with 80% of confluence and after cryopreservation the average viability after freezing was 68.8%, with cellular morphologies being maintained. Therefore, we proved the isolation of somatic cells from the follicle of bird’s feathers, suggesting that this is a source of great value, viable and effective for obtaining biological material for the elaboration of a biobank.


feather follicle, somatic cells, birds


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