The Generation, Exploitation and Future of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

This review is available for download here


The foundational advancements of John Gurdon and Shinya Yamanaka have improved understanding of dedifferentiation of cells to a pluripotent state. The seminal discovery established a novel system to study disease pathogenesis, drug screening, and toxicity, as well as sprouted the new field of regenerative medicine. In this article, the methodology to obtain dedifferentiated cells, known as induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, subsequent validation, and application of which are reviewed. The experiments investigated here aim to demonstrate the capacity of iPS cells to replace the ethically-gray human embryonic cells by developing human livers and viable, healthy animals. It is concluded that the reported methods pave the way for a bright future of iPS cell application in both basic and applied sciences.

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Jacob Steenwyk

Jacob Steenwyk

Jacob Steenwyk '15 is a Biochemistry and Molecular Biology major conducting research on genomic copy number variation in fungi with Dr. John Gibbons. Jacob is fortunate enough to be published in SURJ, give a TEDx talk, and serve as the director of Clark University’s Emergency Medical Services Program. His favorite classes have been Cell Biology and Organic Chemistry. Jacob loves hiking and camping in Joshua Tree in his home state of California. Currently, his favorite culinary dish is Chana Masala.