Generation of forebrain neurons from human embryonic stem cells

Generation of forebrain neurons from human embryonic stem cells

Funding Type: 
SEED Grant
Grant Number: 
RS1-00205
Award Value: 
$587,591
Disease Focus: 
Aging
Alzheimer's Disease
Neurological Disorders
Stem Cell Use: 
Embryonic Stem Cell
Status: 
Closed
Public Abstract: 
Statement of Benefit to California: 
Progress Report: 

Year 1

The goal of this proposal was to generate forebrain neurons from human embryonic stem cells. Our general strategy was to sequentially expose ES cells to signals that would lead the cells to acquire characteristics typical of differentiated brain cells that are lost in disorders such as Alzheimer's Disease. The most important advance of the research was our ability to achieve this goal. We now have a well-developed protocol that can be used to generate forebrain cells in culture. We have found that these cells not only express genes typical of these cells, they extend axons and dendrites and can make synaptic connections. These cells could be very useful for transplantation studies, as well as for developing cell culture models of Alzheimer's disease. Finally, we have discovered that the same protocol is effective in generating forebrain neurons from iPS cells, attesting to the general usefulness of this strategy.

© 2013 California Institute for Regenerative Medicine