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Int J Mol Med. 2018 Jul;42(1):131-140. doi: 10.3892/ijmm.2018.3610. Epub 2018 Apr 3.

Leukemia inhibitory factor regulates marmoset induced pluripotent stem cell proliferation via a PI3K/‌Akt‑dependent Tbx‑3 activation pathway.

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, College of Life Science, Zhejiang Sci‑Tech University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310018, P.R. China.


Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) is the most pleiotropic cytokine of the interleukin‑6 family, and is widely used to establish and maintain pluripotent stem cells, particularly mouse pluripotent stem cells. However, no reports have fully elucidated the application of LIF in marmoset induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) culture, particularly the underlying mechanisms. To demonstrate the feasibility of the application of LIF to marmoset iPSCs, the present study assessed these cells in the presence of LIF. Cell proliferation was measured using MTT assay, cell apoptosis was determined by flow cytometric analysis of fluorescein isothiocyanate Annexin V staining and the differentially expressed genes were analysed using Digital Gene Expression (DGE) analysis. The altered expression of pluripotency‑associated genes was confirmed by reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction and western blot analysis. Furthermore, following treatment with LY294002, cell proliferation was measured by MTT assay and protein levels were confirmed by western blot analysis. The results showed that LIF significantly promoted the number of proliferating cells, but had no effect on apoptosis. Digital Gene Expression analysis was used to examine the differentially expressed genes of marmoset iPSCs in the presence of LIF. The results showed that the pluripotency‑associated transcription factor‑encoding gene T‑box 3 (Tbx‑3) was activated by LIF. Notably, LIF increased the levels of phosphorylated (p‑)AKT and Tbx‑3 in the marmoset iPSCs. Furthermore, pretreatment with LY294002, an inhibitor of phosphoinositide 3‑kinase (PI3K), significantly impaired the LIF‑induced upregulation of p‑AKT and Tbx‑3 in the marmoset iPSCs, suggesting that the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway is involved in this regulation. Taken together, the results suggested that LIF is effective in maintaining marmoset iPSCs in cultures, which is associated with the activation of Tbx‑3 through regulation of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway.

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