Mammalian and avian cells cultured on glass or plastic substrates produce microexudates of cellular macromolecules which remain bound to the substrate when the cells are detached. The gross macromolecular composition of microexudates from a range of diploid, heteroploid, and virus-transformed cells was determined with cells labeled with radioisotopes. Significant differences in the amounts of cellular glycoproteins, proteins, and RNA present in microexudates were found between different cell types and between cells of the same type at different stages of growth. Inoculation of cells onto substrates "coated" with microexudates altered their growth behavior. Microexudates from exponentially growing subconfluent homotypic and heterotypic cell populations enhanced the growth of mouse and chick embryo cells seeded at very low densities, but similar microexudates had no effect on the proliferation of cells seeded at higher densities. The enhanced growth of low-density cell populations seeded on microexudates was compared with the growth enhancement produced by feeder cell layers and conditioned medium.

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