Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs) Essay

Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs) Essay

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Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have the capacity to have a widespread impact on biomedical research and therapeutic approaches to an array of diseases and disorders. These stem cells are of extreme potency because they can self-renew in culture while maintaining the capability to become virtually any cell type (Zhu and Huangfu, 2013). While there are many ethical concerns regarding embryonic stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells arise from adult somatic cells that can be reprogrammed to enter the pluripotent state and have similar characteristics of embryonic stem cells such as having normal karyotypes, expression of telomerase activity, cell surface markers and genes, as well as mature and differentiate into advanced derivatives of the primary germ layers (Yu et al., 2007). These features are of great utility because they give insight to developmental biology and are extremely useful in the emerging field of regenerative medicine. This paper discusses the methods of which human somatic cells are reprogrammed allowing the generation of disease-specific and patient-specific pluripotent cell lines that can provide immense promise in regenerative medicine.
Embryonic Stem Cells
Embryonic stem cells (ESC) are cells that have the ability to grow indefinitely, maintain pluripotency and differentiate into all three germ layers. In 1981, two groups first derived them from the inner cell mass of mouse blastocyst and showed that ESCs arise from totipotent cells of the mammalian embryo, have normal karyotypes and are able to have unlimited and undifferentiated proliferation in vivo (Evans and Kaufman, 1981; Martin 1981). A decade later, Thomson et al. derived the first human embryonic stem cell lines (hESC) from cultured human b...


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...rshal, V.S., and Jones, J.M. 1998. Embryonic stem cell lines derived from human blastocysts. Science 282, 1145-1147.

Wernig, M., Meissner, A., Foreman, R., Brambrink, T., Ku, M., Hochedlinger, K., Bernstein, B.E., and Jaenisch, R. 2007. In vitro reprogramming of fibroblasts into a pluripotent ES cell-like state. Nature. 448: 318–324

Yamanaka, S. 2007. Strategies and new developments in the generation of patient-specific pluripotent stem cells. Cell Stem Cell.1:39–49.

Yu, J., Vodyanik, M. A., Smuga-Otto, K., Antiosiewicz-Bourget, J., Frane, J. L., Tian, S., Nie, J., Jonsdottir, G. A., Ruotti, V., Stewart, R., Slukvin, I. I., Thomson, J. A. 2007. Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Lines Derived from Human Somatic Cells. Science. 318:1917-1920


Zhu. Z and Huangfu, D. 2013. Human Pluripotent Stem Cells: an emerging model in developmental biology. Development. 140:705-717.

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