Until now, reprogramming fully differentiated cells into a pluripotent state has had a major drawback: the use of genome-integrating linkurl:retroviruses;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/54750/ to do the job. But a new study published tomorrow in Science reports on the creation of reprogrammed cells without such integrating viruses. "The number one priority for labs working on iPS translation is to alleviate this problem of integration of viruses into the human genome," linkurl:Ali Brivanlou;http://www.rockefeller.edu/research/abstract.php?id=127 of Rockefeller University, who was not involved in the study, told The Scientist. "This paper addressed this issue head-on," he said, noting that the ability not to compromise the genome brings the technique "one important step closer to clinical applications." The researchers, led by linkurl:Konrad Hochedlinger,;http://www.hms.harvard.edu/dms/bbs/fac/Hochedlinger.html from Harvard Medical School, used adenoviruses to introduce the four reprogramming transcription factors (Oct4, Sox2, klf4, and c-Myc) into adult mouse somatic cells. Unlike retroviruses, used in the linkurl:first reprogramming studies;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/53873/ and experiments until now,...
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