Menu

Cell Lines Gain Cancer-Related Mutations

A screen of human embryonic stem cell lines finds several that accumulated changes in the gene TP53, including aberrations commonly seen in cancer.

Apr 27, 2017
Kerry Grens

ISTOCK, SELVANEGRAAmong 140 human embryonic stem cell lines used for basic research or clinical development, five have gathered mutations in the tumor suppressor gene TP53, according to the results of a screen published yesterday (April 26) in Nature. As STAT News reported, two of these lines—H1 and H9—have been used in people, but there is no evidence they have caused cancer in the recipients.

“Our findings indicate that an additional series of quality control checks should be implemented during the production of stem cells and their downstream use in developing therapies,” coauthor Kevin Eggan of Harvard University said in a press release. “Fortunately, these genetic checks can be readily performed with precise, sensitive, and increasingly inexpensive sequencing methods.”

The six mutations that Eggan’s team uncovered in TP53 affect regions of the p53 protein’s DNA binding region, which is commonly disrupted in human cancers.

Cells bearing the mutations appeared to have an advantage over others, the scientists showed. “My own lab first reported P53 mutations in human pluripotent stem cells two years ago, and found that they were the result of ‘evolution in a culture dish’—selection of the fittest cells in populations of cells over time,” Jeanne Loring, director of the Center for Regenerative Medicine at the Scripps Research Institute who was not part of the present study, told The San Diego Union-Tribune in an email.

“I’ve been on this quality control soapbox for so long all by myself that I’m surprised to find company,” she added. “But I’m glad that researchers are taking these issues seriously. The FDA [US Food and Drug Administration] doesn’t require genome sequencing, but we’re doing it anyway.”

September 2018

The Muscle Issue

The dynamic tissue reveals its secrets

Marketplace

Sponsored Product Updates

StemExpress LeukopakâNow Available in Frozen Format

StemExpress LeukopakâNow Available in Frozen Format

StemExpress, a Folsom, California based leading supplier of human biospecimens, announces the release of frozen Peripheral Blood Leukopaks. Leukopaks provide an enriched source of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) with low granulocyte and red blood cells that can be used in a variety of downstream cell-based applications.

New Antifade Mounting Media from Vector Laboratories Enhances Immunofluorescence Applications

New Antifade Mounting Media from Vector Laboratories Enhances Immunofluorescence Applications

Vector Laboratories, a leader in the development and manufacture of labeling and detection reagents for biomedical research, introduces VECTASHIELD® Vibrance™ – antifade mounting media that delivers significant improvements to the immunofluorescence workflow.

Enabling Genomics-Guided Precision Medicine

Enabling Genomics-Guided Precision Medicine

Download this eBook from Qiagen to learn more about the promise of precision medicine and how QCITM Interpret can help deliver better care with better knowledge.

Best Practices for Sample Preparation and Lipid Extraction from Various Samples

Best Practices for Sample Preparation and Lipid Extraction from Various Samples

Download this white paper from Bertin Technologies to learn how to extract and analyze lipid samples from various models!