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The University of Southampton
Centre for Human Development, Stem Cells and RegenerationResearch themes

Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

An iPSC colony derived from fetal femur cells stained for a marker of pluripotency


During development, the stem cells of the early embryo possess the capacity to proliferate and specialise (or ‘differentiate') to generate all the functional cells that constitute the various tissues and organs of our body such as bone, skin and nerve tissue. This capacity of these cells is termed, pluripotency.


Recent approaches have been developed to return specialised, functional cell types of an adult back to an undifferentiated and pluripotent state similar to these early embryonic cells. These ‘induced pluripotent stem cells' (iPSCs) provide a unique opportunity to recapitulate and study the mechanisms underlying cell differentiation. We are exploring the potential to revert a range of skeletal cell types back to an undifferentiated state and exploring the differences between the various cell sources on the differentiation of these iPSCs. Understanding these mechanisms will enable us to use iPSCs as a patient specific cell source for regenerating organs and tissues.

Induced pluripotent stem cells left to differentiate spontaneously form a diverse range of cell types.
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