Fat Cells Better For Induced Pluripotency

An update on induced pluripotency work from ScienceDaily: "human fat removed during liposuction conceal versatile cells that are more quickly and easily coaxed to become induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS cells, than are the skin cells most often used by researchers ... Fibroblasts, or skin cells, must be grown in the lab for three weeks or more before they can be reprogrammed. But these stem cells from fat are ready to go right away ... Unlike highly specialized skin-cell fibroblasts, these cells in the fat have a relatively wide portfolio of differentiation options - becoming fat, bone or muscle as needed. It's this pre-existing flexibility, the researchers believe, that gives these cell an edge over the skin cells. ... These cells are not as far along on the differentiation pathway, so they're easier to back up to an earlier state. They are more embryonic-like than fibroblasts, which take more effort to reprogram." Every discovery that makes it easier and cheaper to work with stem cells will help speed up progress in developing working regenerative therapies.

Link: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090907162316.htm

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