The prototype of all stem cells is the pluripotent stem cell generated from the inner cell mass of a blastocyst. Such pluripotent cells are therefore called embryonic stem cells (ESC). Their artificial counterpart of ESC are the recombinantly induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) generated by overexpression of key factors required to maintain the transcriptome and epigenetics of a truly pluripotent cell: NANOG, OCT4 and SOX2. In addition, to increase the cloning efficacy, in some cases a growth-promoting factor such as MYC is employed, and to ensure sufficient telomer lengths for extended expansion of the cells the enzyme telomerase (TERT) is expressed as well. The pluripotent stem cells allow generation of all cell types and lineages of cells found in an adult individual. They therefore inspired the field of regenerative medicine. Hope was high that iPSC will open new avenues to all cells needed for therapy. However a simple application of recombinant iPSC for therapy in an adult patient may yield a very high risk to develop cancer, as iPSC tend to generate teratomas.
Citation: Hart ML, Maerz JK, Aicher WK (2013) The International Conference on Tissue Science and Engineering 2012: News on Emerging Cell - Based Therapies? J Tissue Sci Eng S11:e001. doi: 10.4172/2157-7552.S11-e001