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Disease models

Photoreceptors differentiated from patient keratinocyte-derived induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells to model ophthalmic diseases

In vitro and mouse studies suggest iPS cells derived from patient keratinocytes could be used to generate photoreceptor precursors to model or treat genetic retinal disorders. In iPS cells derived from keratinocytes obtained from a patient with retinal pigmentosa, differentiated iPS cells generated multilayer eyecup structures and contained a pigmented layer of cells displaying photoreceptor properties and markers. In mice, transplanted photoreceptor precursors that integrated into the eye formed mature photoreceptors. Next steps could include using the models to identify small molecules or gene replacement constructs that could help treat retinal disorders.

SciBX 6(40); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.1141
Published online Oct. 17, 2013

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Tucker, B.A. et al. eLife; published online Aug. 27, 2013;
Contact: Edwin M. Stone, University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine,
Iowa City, Iowa