A team of Japanese researchers has changed epithelial cells from the livers and stomachs of adult mice into pluripotent cells that resemble embryonic stem cells, according to a linkurl:paper;http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/1154884 in this week's __Science__. In 2006, the Kyoto University team, led by linkurl:Shinya Yamanaka,;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/23254/ used retroviruses to transfect adult mouse fibroblasts and embryonic cells with four transcription factors, linkurl:reprogramming;http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=16904174&dopt=AbstractPlus them into pluripotent cells. Last year they linkurl:used the technique;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/53873/ to reprogram human fibroblasts into pluripotent stem cells, setting off a whirlwind of research attention focused on reprogramming fibroblasts into stem cells that might grow into specific tissues and organs for transplant. But the current study suggests that stem cells generated from adult epithelial cells rather than adult fibroblasts may provide better raw material for patient-specific tissues and organs. Lorenz Studer, of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, said that the Yamanaka study may shift the stem cell research community's focus on fibroblasts....
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