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      Differentiation of Embryonic Stem Cells to Clinically Relevant Populations: Lessons from Embryonic Development

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      Cell

      Elsevier BV

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          Abstract

          The potential to generate virtually any differentiated cell type from embryonic stem cells (ESCs) offers the possibility to establish new models of mammalian development and to create new sources of cells for regenerative medicine. To realize this potential, it is essential to be able to control ESC differentiation and to direct the development of these cells along specific pathways. Embryology has offered important insights into key pathways regulating ESC differentiation, resulting in advances in modeling gastrulation in culture and in the efficient induction of endoderm, mesoderm, and ectoderm and many of their downstream derivatives. This has led to the identification of new multipotential progenitors for the hematopoietic, neural, and cardiovascular lineages and to the development of protocols for the efficient generation of a broad spectrum of cell types including hematopoietic cells, cardiomyocytes, oligodendrocytes, dopamine neurons, and immature pancreatic beta cells. The next challenge will be to demonstrate the functional utility of these cells, both in vitro and in preclinical models of human disease.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Cell
          Cell
          Elsevier BV
          00928674
          February 2008
          February 2008
          : 132
          : 4
          : 661-680
          Article
          10.1016/j.cell.2008.02.008
          18295582
          © 2008

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