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Mouse cardiomyocytes generated from fibroblasts with one pluripotency factor and four small molecules

Cell culture studies suggest cardiomyocytes for use in pharmacological screening and regenerative therapies could be generated with minimal genetic manipulation. In mouse embryonic and tail tip fibroblasts, expression of the pluripotency transcription factor Oct4 plus a combination of four small molecules led to beating cardiomyocytes via a cardiac precursor state without transition through a pluripotent state. The cardiomyocytes expressed cardiac- and ventricular-specific markers and exhibited a cross-striated pattern and electrophysiological ventricular characteristics. Next steps include isolating and expanding a cardiac cell population and translating the approach to human cardiomyocytes.

SciBX 7(13); doi:10.1038/scibx.2014.386
Published online April 3, 2014

Patent application filed; available for licensing

Wang, H. et al. Cell Rep.; published online Feb. 20, 2014;
Contact: Sheng Ding, Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease, San Francisco, Calif.