Patient-Specific Embryonic Stem Cells Derived from Human SCNT Blastocysts

Science  17 Jun 2005:
Vol. 308, Issue 5729, pp. 1777-1783
DOI: 10.1126/science.1112286

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Patient-specific, immune-matched human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are anticipated to be of great biomedical importance for studies of disease and development and to advance clinical deliberations regarding stem cell transplantation. Eleven hESC lines were established by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) of skin cells from patients with disease or injury into donated oocytes. These lines, nuclear transfer (NT)–hESCs, grown on human feeders from the same NT donor or from genetically unrelated individuals, were established at high rates, regardless of NT donor sex or age. NT-hESCs were pluripotent, chromosomally normal, and matched the NT patient's DNA. The major histocompatibility complex identity of each NT-hESC when compared to the patient's own showed immunological compatibility, which is important for eventual transplantation. With the generation of these NT-hESCs, evaluations of genetic and epigenetic stability can be made. Additional work remains to be done regarding the development of reliable directed differentiation and the elimination of remaining animal components. Before clinical use of these cells can occur, preclinical evidence is required to prove that transplantation of differentiated NT-hESCs can be safe, effective, and tolerated.

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