Human embryonic stem cells as a powerful tool for studying human embryogenesis

Tamar Dvash, Dalit Ben-Yosef, Rachel Eiges*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Human embryonic stem cells (HESC) are pluripotent stem cell lines derived from the inner cell mass (ICM) of human blastocyst-stage embryos. They are characterized by their unlimited capacity to self-renew in culture. In addition, they have a broad developmental potential, as demonstrated by their ability to form practically any cell type in vivo and in vitro. These two features have made HESC extremely important in basic and applied research. In addition, they may serve as a powerful tool for studying human development. HESC can recapitulate embryogenesis by expressing developmentally regulated genes and by activating molecular pathways as they occur in vivo. Moreover, they can be used to analyze the effect of specific mutations on particular developmental events and may enable us to identify critical factors that play a role in the processes of cell commitment, differentiation, and adult cell reprogramming. Thus, modeling human embryogenesis by the use of HESC may allow new insights into developmental processes, which would otherwise be inaccessible for research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-117
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric Research
Volume60
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2006
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Human embryonic stem cells as a powerful tool for studying human embryogenesis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this