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      Cardiomyocytes from human pluripotent stem cells: From laboratory curiosity to industrial biomedical platform

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          Abstract

          Cardiomyocytes from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs-CMs) could revolutionise biomedicine. Global burden of heart failure will soon reach USD $90bn, while unexpected cardiotoxicity underlies 28% of drug withdrawals. Advances in hPSC isolation, Cas9/CRISPR genome engineering and hPSC-CM differentiation have improved patient care, progressed drugs to clinic and opened a new era in safety pharmacology. Nevertheless, predictive cardiotoxicity using hPSC-CMs contrasts from failure to almost total success. Since this likely relates to cell immaturity, efforts are underway to use biochemical and biophysical cues to improve many of the ~ 30 structural and functional properties of hPSC-CMs towards those seen in adult CMs. Other developments needed for widespread hPSC-CM utility include subtype specification, cost reduction of large scale differentiation and elimination of the phenotyping bottleneck. This review will consider these factors in the evolution of hPSC-CM technologies, as well as their integration into high content industrial platforms that assess structure, mitochondrial function, electrophysiology, calcium transients and contractility. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Cardiomyocyte Biology: Integration of Developmental and Environmental Cues in the Heart edited by Marcus Schaub and Hughes Abriel.

          Highlights

          • hPSC-CM drug screening, disease modelling & Cas9/CRISPR engineering becoming routine.

          • hPSC-CMs used to refine patient treatment & assist in progressing drugs to clinic.

          • Transplantation into heart failure pigs and primates now translated to humans.

          • Barriers to progression include cost of goods, subtype specification & maturation.

          • 2D and 3D hPSC-CM high content phenotyping platforms evolving rapidly.

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          Most cited references 158

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          Efficient design and assembly of custom TALEN and other TAL effector-based constructs for DNA targeting

          TALENs are important new tools for genome engineering. Fusions of transcription activator-like (TAL) effectors of plant pathogenic Xanthomonas spp. to the FokI nuclease, TALENs bind and cleave DNA in pairs. Binding specificity is determined by customizable arrays of polymorphic amino acid repeats in the TAL effectors. We present a method and reagents for efficiently assembling TALEN constructs with custom repeat arrays. We also describe design guidelines based on naturally occurring TAL effectors and their binding sites. Using software that applies these guidelines, in nine genes from plants, animals and protists, we found candidate cleavage sites on average every 35 bp. Each of 15 sites selected from this set was cleaved in a yeast-based assay with TALEN pairs constructed with our reagents. We used two of the TALEN pairs to mutate HPRT1 in human cells and ADH1 in Arabidopsis thaliana protoplasts. Our reagents include a plasmid construct for making custom TAL effectors and one for TAL effector fusions to additional proteins of interest. Using the former, we constructed de novo a functional analog of AvrHah1 of Xanthomonas gardneri. The complete plasmid set is available through the non-profit repository AddGene and a web-based version of our software is freely accessible online.
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            FLASH Assembly of TALENs Enables High-Throughput Genome Editing

            Engineered transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) have shown promise as facile and broadly applicable genome editing tools. However, no publicly available high-throughput method for constructing TALENs has been published and large-scale assessments of the success rate and targeting range of the technology remain lacking. Here we describe the Fast Ligation-based Automatable Solid-phase High-throughput (FLASH) platform, a rapid and cost-effective method we developed to enable large-scale assembly of TALENs. We tested 48 FLASH-assembled TALEN pairs in a human cell-based EGFP reporter system and found that all 48 possessed efficient gene modification activities. We also used FLASH to assemble TALENs for 96 endogenous human genes implicated in cancer and/or epigenetic regulation and found that 84 pairs were able to efficiently introduce targeted alterations. Our results establish the robustness of TALEN technology and demonstrate that FLASH facilitates high-throughput genome editing at a scale not currently possible with engineered zinc-finger nucleases or meganucleases.
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              Hybrid restriction enzymes: zinc finger fusions to Fok I cleavage domain.

              A long-term goal in the field of restriction-modification enzymes has been to generate restriction endonucleases with novel sequence specificities by mutating or engineering existing enzymes. This will avoid the increasingly arduous task of extensive screening of bacteria and other microorganisms for new enzymes. Here, we report the deliberate creation of novel site-specific endonucleases by linking two different zinc finger proteins to the cleavage domain of Fok I endonuclease. Both fusion proteins are active and under optimal conditions cleave DNA in a sequence-specific manner. Thus, the modular structure of Fok I endonuclease and the zinc finger motifs makes it possible to create "artificial" nucleases that will cut DNA near a predetermined site. This opens the way to generate many new enzymes with tailor-made sequence specificities desirable for various applications.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                Biochim Biophys Acta
                Biochim. Biophys. Acta
                Biochimica et Biophysica Acta
                Elsevier Pub. Co
                0006-3002
                1878-2434
                1 July 2016
                July 2016
                : 1863
                : 7Part B
                : 1728-1748
                Affiliations
                [a ]Department of Stem Cell Biology, Centre for Biomolecular Sciences, University of Nottingham, NG7 2RD, United Kingdom
                [b ]Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Hinxton, Cambridge, United Kingdom
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author. chris.denning@ 123456nottingham.ac.uk
                Article
                S0167-4889(15)00367-5
                10.1016/j.bbamcr.2015.10.014
                5221745
                26524115
                © 2015 The Authors

                This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

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