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Stem Cells Dev. 2010 Apr;19(4):469-80. doi: 10.1089/scd.2009.0314.

iPS cells reprogrammed from human mesenchymal-like stem/progenitor cells of dental tissue origin.

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Section of Oral and Diagnostic Sciences, Division of Endodontics, College of Dental Medicine, Columbia University, New York, New York, USA.


Generation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells holds a great promise for regenerative medicine and other aspects of clinical applications. Many types of cells have been successfully reprogrammed into iPS cells in the mouse system; however, reprogramming human cells have been more difficult. To date, human dermal fibroblasts are the most accessible and feasible cell source for iPS generation. Dental tissues derived from ectomesenchyme harbor mesenchymal-like stem/progenitor cells and some of the tissues have been treated as biomedical wastes, for example, exfoliated primary teeth and extracted third molars. We asked whether stem/progenitor cells from discarded dental tissues can be reprogrammed into iPS cells. The 4 factors Lin28/Nanog/Oct4/Sox2 or c-Myc/Klf4/Oct4/Sox2 carried by viral vectors were used to reprogram 3 different dental stem/progenitor cells: stem cells from exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHED), stem cells from apical papilla (SCAP), and dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs). We showed that all 3 can be reprogrammed into iPS cells and appeared to be at a higher rate than fibroblasts. They exhibited a morphology indistinguishable from human embryonic stem (hES) cells in cultures and expressed hES cell markers SSEA-4, TRA-1-60, TRA-1-80, TRA-2-49, Nanog, Oct4, and Sox2. They formed embryoid bodies in vitro and teratomas in vivo containing tissues of all 3 germ layers. We conclude that cells of ectomesenchymal origin serve as an excellent alternative source for generating iPS cells.

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