Somatic stem cells can be isolated from a variety of sources. Although some studies have suggested that somatic stem cells may represent a cell population that is very similar to embryonic stem (ES) cells, it remains unclear whether somatic stem cells retain the potential to differentiate into any cell type derived from the three germ layers. In this study, we investigated the transdifferentiation potential of somatic stem cells using adipose tissue-derived stem/progenitor cells (ASCs; mesodermal stem cells) and pancreatic stem cells (endodermal stem cells). Previous reports from other groups describe the protocol that has been used to differentiate ASCs or mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in bone marrow into insulin-producing cells. Induction 1: ASCs were cultured for 3 days in ultra-low attachment plates under serum-free conditions. Induction 2: ASCs were cultured for 24 h with L-DMEM, and reinduced with serum-free H-DMEM for another 10 h. Unlike previous reports, we did not get ASCs to express any pancreas-specific genes, including insulin-1 or insulin-2. Pancreatic stem cells were induced to differentiate into adipo/osteogenic by the following protocols. Induction protocol 1: ACSs were cultured for 7 days with medium containing indometacin, dexamethasone, hydrocortisone, and insulin for adipogenic differentiation. Induction protocol 2: The cells were cultured for 7 days with medium containing dexamethasone, ascorbate-2-phosphate, and -glycerophosphate for osteogenic differentiation. Although these approaches have been widely used for adipo/osteogenic differentiation from MSCs, adipo/osteogenic differentiation from pancreatic stem cells was not observed. These data suggest that it is not easy for somatic stem cells to transdifferentiate into other germ cell types, at least, under these conditions.
Department of Advanced Medicine in Biotechnology and Robotics, Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine, Nagoya 466-8550, Japan
Publication date: May 1, 2009
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Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.