Publication details

The Aberrant DNA Methylation Profile of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Is Connected to the Reprogramming Process and Is Normalized During In Vitro Culture

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Year of publication 2016
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source PLOS ONE
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Informatics

Field Genetics and molecular biology
Keywords pluripotent stem cells; DNA methylation; MethylScreen technology; CpG islands; pluripotency and differentiation markers
Description The potential clinical applications of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) are limited by genetic and epigenetic variations among hiPSC lines and the question of their equivalency with human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). We used MethylScreen technology to determine the DNA methylation profile of pluripotency and differentiation markers in hiPSC lines from different source cell types compared to hESCs and hiPSC source cells. After derivation, hiPSC lines compromised a heterogeneous population characterized by variable levels of aberrant DNA methylation. These aberrations were induced during somatic cell reprogramming and their levels were associated with the type of hiPSC source cells. hiPSC population heterogeneity was reduced during prolonged culture and hiPSCs acquired an hESC-like methylation profile. In contrast, the expression of differentiation marker genes in hiPSC lines remained distinguishable from that in hESCs. Taken together, in vitro culture facilitates hiPSC acquisition of hESC epigenetic characteristics. However, differences remain between both pluripotent stem cell types, which must be considered before their use in downstream applications.
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