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What exactly are "feeder cells"? A paper I'm reading says they harvested the cells and then plated them onto feeder cells. What is the purpose? Is in order to promote growth?

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Cultures of growth-arrested feeder cells have been used for years to promote cell proliferation, particularly with low-density inocula. Basically, feeder cells consist in a layer of cells unable to divide, which provides extracellular secretions to help another cell to proliferate.

From this paper's abstract: Feeder Layer Cell Actions and Applications

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