A complete (re)program to recognize the 10-year anniversary of iPSCs

Author: Stacey Johnson, 08/25/16

Ten years ago today, Japanese scientists Shinya Yamanaka and Kazutoshi Takahashi published a paper announcing the creation of rodent induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, thus pioneering the field of iPS cell technology. They showed that they could convert adult cells into pluripotent stem cells – in other words, they reprogrammed them to look and function like embryonic stem cells.

The diagram shows a simplified summary of the experiments that Takahashi and Yamanaka did to identify genes that could convert structural cells into induced pluripotent stem cells. They identified the four essential factors that were required for the reprogramming process: Oct3/4, Sox2, Klf4 and c-Myc. Credit: Carmen Wong, CCRM.

The diagram shows a simplified summary of the experiments that Takahashi and Yamanaka did to identify genes that could convert structural cells into induced pluripotent stem cells. They identified the four essential factors that were required for the reprogramming process: Oct3/4, Sox2, Klf4 and c-Myc. Credit: Carmen Wong, CCRM.

 

Reflecting on this event, Dr. Yamanaka said: “I believe the biggest impact to date of iPS cell technology is not regenerative medicine, but in making disease models, drug discovery and toxicology testing….”

Nevertheless, this discovery is a significant milestone in the regenerative medicine world. This becomes very apparent as you read the blogs participating in Signals’ first ever blog carnival to recognize the 10-year anniversary of iPSCs.

Many of you readers will know a great deal about iPSCs. For those less familiar, spend the next minute – literally – watching the video below, which should provide all the background you require before diving into the blogs below. (Although several of them also provide an excellent primer on these important cells.)

If you have the time, I encourage you to read all the blogs. On their own, they reflect the unique perspectives of their authors and sometimes the mandates of their organizations. Taken together, they may help to contextualize iPS cell research and give us a glimpse of where the technology is going. Above all, this blog carnival is intended to launch a conversation in the regenerative medicine community so I hope you will share your comments below.

Enjoy!

The coming of age of pluripotent science & musings on a sonogram, by Michael Cea

Happy 10th birthday, iPSCs! by Paige Collins (McMaster SCCRI)

The stem cell therapy’s obstacle course, by Jovana Drinjakovic (Signals)

Banking on the potential of iPSCs in regenerative medicine, by Nicole Forgione (OIRM/Expression)

Steady progress and more interesting science – 10 years of iPS cells, by David Kent (Signals)

Happy birthday iPS cells! by Malgosia Pakulska (Research2Reality)

Age is just a number: Using iPSCs to model neurodegenerative diseases, by Samantha Payne (Stem Cell Network)

How many stem cell trials will it take to get a cure? by Karen Ring (The Stem Cellar, CIRM)

Are we there yet? by Joe Sornberger (Canadian Stem Cell Foundation)

It’s not about the science – A non-scientist’s take on the impact of the “noble” stem cell, by Lisa Willemse (OIRM/Expression)

iPS cell technology – kickstarting our ability to control cell identity, by Holly Wobma (Signals)

 

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Stacey Johnson

Stacey Johnson

For almost 20 years, Stacey has been providing strategic communications counsel to government, corporate, technology and health organizations. Prior to that, Stacey was at the CTV Television Network, first as a researcher, then as a story producer for “Goldhawk Fights Back,” a special ombudsman segment that aired weekly on the National News and Canada AM. Before joining CCRM as the Director, Communications and Marketing, Stacey was the Director of Communications for the Canadian Arthritis Network. Stacey is editor of Signals. You can follow Stacey on Twitter @msstaceyerin.
Stacey Johnson

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