[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The fine analysis of cell components during the generation of pluripotent cells and their comparison to bone fide human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are valuable tools to understand their biological behavior. In this report, human mesenchymal cells (hMSCs) generated from the human ES cell line H9, were reprogrammed back to induced pluripotent state using Oct-4, Sox2, Nanog, and Lin28 transgenes. Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hIPSCs) were analyzed using electron microscopy and compared with regard to the original hESCs and the hMSCs from which they were derived. This analysis shows that hIPSCs and the original hESCs are morphologically undistinguishable but differ from the hMSCs with respect to the presence of several morphological features of undifferentiated cells at both the cytoplasmic (ribosomes, lipid droplets, glycogen, scarce reticulum) and nuclear levels (features of nuclear plasticity, presence of euchromatin, reticulated nucleoli). We show that hIPSC colonies generated this way presented epithelial aspects with specialized junctions highlighting morphological criteria of the mesenchymal-epithelial transition in cells engaged in a successful reprogramming process. Electron microscopic analysis revealed also specific morphological aspects of partially reprogrammed cells. These results highlight the valuable use of electron microscopy for a better knowledge of the morphological aspects of IPSC and cellular reprogramming.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent studies have demonstrated a relationship between the expression of stem cell-associated genes and relapses in glioblastoma (GBM), suggesting a key role for tumor stem cells in this process. Although there is increasing interest in this field, glioma stem cells (GSCs) are still poorly characterized, their 'stemness' state and factors maintaining these properties remain largely unknown. We performed an expression profiling analysis of pluripotency in gliomaspheres derived from 11 patients. Comparative analysis between GSCs and H1 and H9 human embryonic stem cells as well as H9-derived neural stem cells indicates major variations in gene expression of pluripotency factors Nanog and OCT4, but a stable pattern for SOX2 suggesting its important function in maintaining pluripotency in GSCs. Our results also showed that all GSC lines have the capacity to commit to neural differentiation and express mesenchymal or endothelial differentiation markers. In addition, hierarchical clustering analysis revealed two groups of GSCs reflecting their heterogeneity and identified COL1A1 and IFITM1 as the most discriminating genes. Similar patterns have been observed in tumors from which gliomaspheres have been established. To determine whether this heterogeneity could be clinically relevant, the expression of both genes was further analyzed in an independent cohort of 30 patients with GBM and revealed strong correlation with overall survival. In vitro silencing of COL1A1 and IFTM1 confirmed the effect of these mesenchymal-associated genes on cell invasion and gliomasphere initiation. Our results indicate that COL1A1 and IFITM1 genes could be considered for use in stratifying patients with GBM into subgroups for risk of recurrence at diagnosis, as well as for prognostic and therapeutic evolution.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Diabetes mellitus is the most prevailing disease with progressive incidence worldwide. To date, the pathogenesis of diabetes is far to be understood, and there is no permanent treatment available for diabetes. One of the promising approaches to understand and cure diabetes is to use pluripotent stem cells (PSCs), including embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and induced PCSs (iPSCs). ESCs and iPSCs have a great potential to differentiate into all cell types, and they have a high ability to differentiate into insulin-secreting β cells. Obtaining PSCs genetically identical to the patient presenting with diabetes has been a longstanding dream for the in vitro modeling of disease and ultimately cell therapy. For several years, somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) was the method of choice to generate patient-specific ESC lines. However, this technology faces ethical and practical concerns. Interestingly, the recently established iPSC technology overcomes the major problems of other stem cell types including the lack of ethical concern and no risk of immune rejection. Several iPSC lines have been recently generated from patients with different types of diabetes, and most of these cell lines are able to differentiate into insulin-secreting β cells. In this review, we summarize recent advances in the differentiation of pancreatic β cells from PSCs, and describe the challenges for their clinical use in diabetes cell therapy. Furthermore, we discuss the potential use of patient-specific PSCs as an in vitro model, providing new insights into the pathophysiology of diabetes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: X-chromosome inactivation (XCI) in mammals relies on XIST, a long noncoding transcript that coats and silences the X chromosome in cis. Here we report the discovery of a long noncoding RNA, XACT, that is expressed from and coats the active X chromosome specifically in human pluripotent cells. In the absence of XIST, XACT is expressed from both X chromosomes in humans but not in mice, suggesting a unique role for XACT in the control of human XCI initiation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background. Human induced pluripotent stem cells offer perspectives for cell therapy and research models for diseases. We applied this approach to the normal and pathologic erythroid differentiation model by establishing induced pluripotent stem cells from normal and homozygous sickle cell disease donors. Design and Methods. We addressed the question whether these cells can reach complete erythroid terminal maturation notably with a complete switch from fetal to adult hemoglobin. Sickle cell disease induced pluripotent stem cells were differentiated in vitro into red blood cells and characterized for their terminal maturation in terms of hemoglobin content, oxygen transport capacity, deformability, sickling and adherence. Nucleated erythroblast populations generated from normal and pathologic induced pluripotent stem cells were then injected into non-obese diabetic severe combined immunodeficiency mice to follow the in vivo hemoglobin maturation.Results. We observed that in vitro erythroid differentiation results in predominance of fetal hemoglobin which rescues the functionality of red blood cells in the pathological model of sickle cell disease. We observed, in vivo, the switch of fetal to adult hemoglobin after infusion of nucleated erythroid precursors derived from either normal or pathologic induced pluripotent stem cells into mice.Conclusions. These results demonstrate that human induced pluripotent stem cells (i) can achieve complete terminal erythroid maturation, in vitro in terms of nucleus expulsion and in vivo in terms of hemoglobin maturation and (ii) open the way to generation of functionally corrected red blood cells from sickle cell disease induced pluripotent stem cells, without any genetic modification or drug treatment.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Here we report on the identification of a human pluripotent embryonic stem cell (hESC) specific mitochondrial protein that is re-expressed in cancer cells, ATAD3B. ATAD3B belongs to the AAA+ ATPase ATAD3 protein family of mitochondrial proteins specific to multicellular eukaryotes. Using loss- and gain-of-function approaches, we show that ATAD3B associates with the ubiquitous ATAD3A species, negatively regulates the interaction of ATAD3A with matrix nucleoid complexes and contributes to a mitochondria fragmentation phenotype. We conclude that ATAD3B is a negative regulator of ATAD3A and may function as an adaptor of mitochondrial homeostasis and metabolism in hESCs and cancer cells.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Novel embryonic stem cell lines derived from embryos carrying structural chromosomal abnormalities obtained after preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) are of interest to study in terms of the influence of abnormalities on further development. A total of 22 unbalanced blastocysts obtained after PGD were analysed for structural chromosomal defects. Morphological description and chromosomal status of these blastocysts was established and they were used to derive human embryonic stem cell (ESC) lines. An outgrowth of cells was observed for six blastocysts (6/22; 27%). For two blastocysts, the exact morphology was unknown since they were at early stage, and for four blastocysts, the inner cell mass was clearly visible. Fifteen blastocysts carried an unbalanced chromosomal defect linked to a reciprocal translocation, resulting in a positive outgrowth of cells for five blastocysts. One human ESC line was obtained from a blastocyst carrying a partial chromosome-21 monosomy and a partial chromosome-1 trisomy. Six blastocysts carried an unbalanced chromosomal defect linked to a Robertsonian translocation, and one showed a positive outgrowth of cells. One blastocyst carried an unbalanced chromosomal defect linked to an insertion and no outgrowth was observed. The efficiency of deriving human ESC lines with constitutional chromosomal disorders was low and probably depends on the initial morphological aspect of the blastocysts and/or the type of the chromosomal disorders.