Stem cell researchers must take more care in identifying true pluripotency in reprogrammed human cells, according to a study published online today (October 11) in Nature Biotechnology. The paper outlines strict molecular criteria for recognizing pluripotency, and warns that relying on just a single marker will muddle the field.
"All too often people in the human [stem cell] field use the most minimal criteria to call cells pluripotent," said linkurl:George Daley,;http://daley.med.harvard.edu/ a stem cell biologist at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute and Children's Hospital Boston who coauthored the study. "[The] colonies, on the surface, look like they're reprogrammed, but by stringent criteria are not." Scientists are getting better at reprogramming human cells into stem cells with embryonic-like properties -- known as induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells -- but identifying those cells that have successfully reached true pluripotency may not be...
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