STEM CELLS

Better cloning through expression

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Science  19 Dec 2014:
Vol. 346, Issue 6216, pp. 1477
DOI: 10.1126/science.346.6216.1477-c

Scientists used somatic cell nuclear transfer to clone Dolly the sheep

PHOTO: © KAREN KASMAUSKI/CORBIS

One method of generating pluripotent cells for cloning is to transfer the nucleus of a differentiated cell into an oocyte (egg cell) that has had its nucleus removed, a procedure known as somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). However, very few SCNT embryos develop to term. To investigate why, Matoba et al. compared gene expression in embryos produced by in vitro fertilization (IVF) and SCNT. They found that SCNT but not IVF embryos repressed certain regions of DNA. Removing this repression enhanced the efficiency of SCNT, suggesting that the expression of one or more of these genes is important for cellular reprogramming.

Cell 159, 884 (2014).

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