Original research article

The authors used this protocol in:
Jul 2009

Navigate this Article


Generation of Mouse Bone Marrow-Derived Dendritic Cells (BM-DCs)    

How to cite Favorites Q&A Share your feedback Cited by


Generating mouse dendritic cells from bone-marrow progenitor cells is a useful tool to study biological functions of mouse dendritic cells. Dendritic cells are one of the major populations of phagocytes able to activate both innate and adaptive immune cells.

Keywords: Phagocytes, Dendritic cells, In vitro, GM-CSF

Materials and Reagents

  1. GM-CSF-transduced B16 cell line
  2. HI FBS (EuroClone, catalog number: EC S0180L )
  3. L-Glutamine (EuroClone, catalog number: EC B3000D )
  4. Penicillin/streptomycin (EuroClone, catalog number: EC B3001D )
  5. IMDM (EuroClone, catalog number: EC B2072L )
  6. Beta-mercaptoethanol (Sigma-Aldrich, catalog number: M6250 )
  7. B16-GMCSF growth supernatant
  8. Phosphate buffered saline (PBS) (EuroClone, catalog number: ECM9605AX )
  9. EDTA
  10. BMDCs culture medium/conditioned medium (see Recipes)


  1. Centrifuges 70 μm-wide cut-off cell strainer
  2. Non-treated cell culture plates
  3. Incubator (37 °C and 5% CO2)
  4. Fluorescence activated cell sortor (FACS)


  1. Flush mouse tibiae and femurs with ice-cold PBS through a 70 μm-wide cut-off cell strainer.
  2. Centrifuge 5 min at 450 x g. Resuspend pelleted cells in conditioned medium (supplemented with 10% of growth supernatant of GM-CSF-transduced B16 cells).
  3. Seed 7 x 106 cells in 100 x 20 mm non-treated cell culture plates in 10 ml of conditioned medium.
  4. Incubate at 37 °C and 5% CO2.
  5. On day 4 and 7 add 5 ml of pre-warmed conditioned medium.
  6. At day 8/9 the percentage of CD11c+ cells should be higher than 90% as measured by FACS analysis. BMDCs are then ready for experimental use.
  7. Harvest the supernatant and gently wash the plate once with 5 ml of pre-warmed PBS.
  8. Incubate 2 min with 5 ml of 2 mM EDTA at 37 °C and 5% CO2.
  9. Collect cells, wash once with PBS.
  10. Centrifuge 5 min at 250 x g and resuspend pelleted cells in conditioned medium.


  1. BMDCs culture medium recipe (conditioned medium)
    HI FBS - 10%
    L-Gln - 2 mM
    Penicillin/streptomycin - 50 U/ml
    Beta-mercaptoethanol - 50 μM
    B16-GMCSF growth supernatant - 10%
    IMDM - to volume


This protocol is described in our Nature paper (Zanoni et al., 2009). This work was supported by grants from the CARIPLO Foundation, the European Commission 6th Framework Program (MUGEN and DC-THERA contracts), the European Commission 7th Framework Program (TOLERAGE and ENCITE contracts), the Associazione Italiana per la Ricerca sul Cancro (AIRC) and the and the Italian Ministry of Education and Research (COFIN).


  1. Zanoni, I., Ostuni, R., Capuano, G., Collini, M., Caccia, M., Ronchi, A. E., Rocchetti, M., Mingozzi, F., Foti, M., Chirico, G., Costa, B., Zaza, A., Ricciardi-Castagnoli, P. and Granucci, F. (2009). CD14 regulates the dendritic cell life cycle after LPS exposure through NFAT activation. Nature 460(7252): 264-268.
Please login or register for free to view full text
Copyright: © 2012 The Authors; exclusive licensee Bio-protocol LLC.
How to cite: Granucci, F., Ostuni, R. and Zanoni, I. (2012). Generation of Mouse Bone Marrow-Derived Dendritic Cells (BM-DCs). Bio-protocol 2(12): e226. DOI: 10.21769/BioProtoc.226.

Please login to post your questions/comments. Your questions will be directed to the authors of the protocol. The authors will be requested to answer your questions at their earliest convenience. Once your questions are answered, you will be informed using the email address that you register with bio-protocol.
You are highly recommended to post your data including images for the troubleshooting.

You are highly recommended to post your data including images for the troubleshooting.

We use cookies on this site to enhance your user experience. By using our website, you are agreeing to allow the storage of cookies on your computer.