Thursday, May 2, 2013
This week in techniques
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oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (iOPCs) to treat myelination disorders
separate studies developed methods to reprogram mouse fibroblasts into iOPCs
and suggested they could be used to help treat diseases with myelination
dysfunction such as multiple sclerosis (MS). In the first study, transduction
of the transcription factors SRY-box containing gene 10 (Sox10),
transcription factor 2 (Olig2)
homeobox 2 (Nkx6-2) in mouse fibroblasts generated
iOPCs that could be differentiated into oligodendrocytes. Coculturing brain
slices from mice lacking myelin
basic protein (Mbp)
with the iOPCs caused axon myelination. In mice lacking Mbp, spinal cord
injection of iOPCs led to axon myelination. In the second study, transduction
of mouse or rat fibroblasts with the transcription factors Sox10, Olig2 and zinc
finger protein 536 (Zfp536) also generated iOPCs that
could be differentiated into oligodendrocytes. Transplantation of iOPCs to
the brain led to axon myelination in Mbp-deficient mice. Next steps include
using the technology on human cells to generate patient-specific iOPCs and
improving the reprogramming process to increase the number of induced cells.
Published online May 2, 2013
Patent application filed by
Repair Foundation and assigned to Case Western Reserve University
for findings in first study; available for licensing
Patent application filed for findings in second study; licensing status
Najm, F.J. et al. Nat.
Biotechnol.; published online April 14, 2013;
Contact: Paul J. Tesar, Case Western Reserve University
School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio
Yang, N. et al. Nat. Biotechnol.; published online April 14, 2013;
Contact: Marius Wernig, Stanford University School of
Medicine, Stanford, Calif.
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