The technology enabling researchers to convert somatic cells, such as skin cells, into induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells makes it possible to generate patient-specific iPS cells for cell replacement therapy without inciting an immune response. This technology also makes it possible to generate disease-specific iPS cells and tissues to study mechanisms of diseases and for drug discovery. Understanding mechanisms underlying somatic cell reprogramming is critical for the safe usage of these cells for clinical therapy. This project is to study the molecular mechanisms of ipS cell induction.
In the past one year, we have made significant progress on each of the three aims and have met most of our project milestones. The funding has lead to one publication in Stem Cells, in which the PI is a corresponding author.