The research team of Professor Keiichi Fukuda, Department of Internal Sciences, Keio University School of Medicine, and Assistant Professor Akira Kunitomi, Keio University Hospital, used the factors of egg cells in collaboration with the Animal Experiment Laboratory of Tsukuba University. Announced that it succeeded in producing iPS cells with higher quality and efficiency than the previous methods.The research results were published in the American scientific journal "Stem Cell Reports".

 In 2006, "iPS cells" was reported by Professor Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University and became a hot topic.It can be easily produced from somatic cells and has the ability to differentiate into various cells (pluripotency).However, with the current technology, the pluripotency varies depending on the iPS cells created, which has been a major issue when applied to regenerative medicine.

 This research group focused on the fact that gene initialization is achieved immediately after fertilization.We have been conducting research, thinking that the components contained in the cells that form the basis of eggs (egg cells) are involved in gene initialization.Then, iPS cells are created by adding 1 of the 4 factors used for the production of iPS cells to the protein "H3foo" contained in the egg cells.The production efficiency is said to be eight times higher than in the case of only three factors.In addition, by adding the H3foo gene, the rate at which iPS cells can be created increased from about 8% to 1% or more, and when the quality of iPS cells was evaluated by transplanting them into fertilized mouse eggs, three were examined. It was also confirmed that they show higher pluripotency than those made by genes alone.

 The H1foo gene used this time is thought to have the effect of smoothing the action of other genes.In the future, iPS cells are expected to be induced to differentiate into many target cells and used for various purposes.If the results of this research make it possible to produce high-quality iPS cells with high efficiency, it is expected that it will save the labor of research and become an effective technology for the development of regenerative medicine.

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