Browsing by Subject "PLURIPOTENT STEM-CELLS"

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  • Grubman, Alexandra; Vandekolk, Teresa H.; Schröder, Jan; Sun, Guizhi; Hatwell-Humble, Jessica; Chan, Jonathan; Oksanen, Minna; Lehtonen, Sarka; Hunt, Cameron; Koistinaho, Jan E.; Nilsson, Susan K.; Haynes, John M.; Pouton, Colin W.; Polo, Jose M. (2020)
    Multiple protocols have been published for generation of iMGLs from hESCs/iPSCs. To date, there are no guides to assist researchers to determine the most appropriate methodology for microglial studies. To establish a framework to facilitate future microglial studies, we first performed a comparative transcriptional analysis between iMGLs derived using three published datasets, which allowed us to establish the baseline protocol that is most representative of bona fide human microglia. Secondly, using CRISPR to tag the classic microglial marker CX3CR1 with nanoluciferase and tdTomato, we generated and functionally validated a reporter ESC line. Finally, using this cell line, we demonstrated that co-culture of iMGL precursors with human glia and neurons enhanced transcriptional resemblance of iMGLs to ex vivo microglia. Together, our comprehensive molecular analysis and reporter cell line are a useful resource for neurobiologists seeking to use iMGLs for disease modeling and drug screening studies.
  • Pihlajoki, Marjut; Doerner, Julia; Cochran, Rebecca S.; Heikinheimo, Markku; Wilson, David B. (2015)
    The adrenal cortex is divided into concentric zones. In humans the major cortical zones are the zona glomerulosa, zona fasciculata, and zona reticularis. The adrenal cortex is a dynamic organ in which senescent cells are replaced by newly differentiated ones. This constant renewal facilitates organ remodeling in response to physiological demand for steroids. Cortical zones can reversibly expand, contract, or alter their biochemical profiles to accommodate needs. Pools of stem/progenitor cells in the adrenal capsule, subcapsular region, and juxtamedullary region can differentiate to repopulate or expand zones. Some of these pools appear to be activated only during specific developmental windows or in response to extreme physiological demand. Senescent cells can also be replenished through direct lineage conversion; for example, cells in the zona glomerulosa can transform into cells of the zona fasciculata. Adrenocortical cell differentiation, renewal, and function are regulated by a variety of endocrine/paracrine factors including adrenocorticotropin, angiotensin II, insulin-related growth hormones, luteinizing hormone, activin, and inhibin. Additionally, zonation and regeneration of the adrenal cortex are controlled by developmental signaling pathways, such as the sonic hedgehog, delta-like homolog 1, fibroblast growth factor, and WNT/1-catenin pathways. The mechanisms involved in adrenocortical remodeling are complex and redundant so as to fulfill the offsetting goals of organ homeostasis and stress adaptation.
  • Harjuhaahto, Sandra; Rasila, Tiina S.; Molchanova, Svetlana M.; Woldegebriel, Rosa; Kvist, Jouni; Konovalova, Svetlana; Sainio, Markus T.; Pennonen, Jana; Torregrosa-Munumer, Ruben; Ibrahim, Hazem; Otonkoski, Timo; Taira, Tomi; Ylikallio, Emil; Tyynismaa, Henna (2020)
    Mitochondrial intermembrane space proteins CHCHD2 and CHCHD10 have roles in motor neuron diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, spinal muscular atrophy and axonal neuropathy and in Parkinson's disease. They form a complex of unknown function. Here we address the importance of these two proteins in human motor neurons. We show that gene edited human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) lacking either CHCHD2 or CHCHD10 are viable and can be differentiated into functional motor neurons that fire spontaneous and evoked action potentials. Mitochondria in knockout iPSC and motor neurons sustain ultrastructure but show increased proton leakage and respiration, and reciprocal compensatory increases in CHCHD2 or CHCHD10. Knockout motor neurons have largely overlapping transcriptome profiles compared to isogenic control line, in particular for synaptic gene expression. Our results show that the absence of either CHCHD2 or CHCHD10 alters mitochondrial respiration in human motor neurons, inducing similar compensatory responses. Thus, pathogenic mechanisms may involve loss of synaptic function resulting from defective energy metabolism.
  • Saarimaki-Vire, Jonna; Balboa, Diego; Russell, Mark A.; Saarikettu, Juha; Kinnunen, Matias; Keskitalo, Salla; Malhi, Amrinder; Valensisi, Cristina; Andrus, Colin; Eurola, Solja; Grym, Heli; Ustinov, Jarkko; Wartiovaara, Kirmo; Hawkins, R. David; Silvennoinen, Olli; Varjosalo, Markku; Morgan, Noel G.; Otonkoski, Timo (2017)
    Activating germline mutations in STAT3 were recently identified as a cause of neonatal diabetes mellitus associated with beta-cell autoimmunity. We have investigated the effect of an activating mutation, STAT3(K392R,) on pancreatic development using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) derived from a patient with neonatal diabetes and pancreatic hypoplasia. Early pancreatic endoderm differentiated similarly from STAT3(K392R) and healthy-control cells, but in later stages, NEUROG3 expressionwas upregulated prematurely in STAT3(K392R) cells together with insulin (INS) and glucagon (GCG). RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) showed robust NEUROG3 downstream targets upregulation. STAT3 mutation correction with CRISPR/Cas9 reversed completely the disease phenotype. STAT3(K392R) -activating properties were not explained fully by altered DNA-binding affinity or increased phosphorylation. Instead, reporter assays demonstrated NEUROG3 promoter activation by STAT3 in pancreatic cells. Furthermore, proteomic and immunocytochemical analyses revealed increased nuclear translocation of STAT3(K392R). Collectively, our results demonstrate that the STAT3(K392R) mutation causes premature endocrine differentiation through direct induction of NEUROG3 expression.
  • Penttinen, Kirsi; Swan, Heikki; Vanninen, Sari; Paavola, Jere; Lahtinen, Annukka M.; Kontula, Kimmo; Aalto-Setala, Katriina (2015)
    Catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia (CPVT) is a highly malignant inherited arrhythmogenic disorder. Type 1 CPVT (CPVT1) is caused by cardiac ryanodine receptor (RyR2) gene mutations resulting in abnormal calcium release from sarcoplasmic reticulum. Dantrolene, an inhibitor of sarcoplasmic Ca2+ release, has been shown to rescue this abnormal Ca2+ release in vitro. We assessed the antiarrhythmic efficacy of dantrolene in six patients carrying various RyR2 mutations causing CPVT. The patients underwent exercise stress test before and after dantrolene infusion. Dantrolene reduced the number of premature ventricular complexes (PVCs) on average by 74% (range 33-97) in four patients with N-terminal or central mutations in the cytosolic region of the RyR2 protein, while dantrolene had no effect in two patients with mutations in or near the transmembrane domain. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) were generated from all the patients and differentiated into spontaneously beating cardiomyocytes (CMs). The antiarrhythmic effect of dantrolene was studied in CMs after adrenaline stimulation by Ca2+ imaging. In iPSC derived CMs with RyR2 mutations in the N-terminal or central region, dantrolene suppressed the Ca2+ cycling abnormalities in 80% (range 65-97) of cells while with mutations in or near the transmembrane domain only in 23 or 32% of cells. In conclusion, we demonstrate that dantrolene given intravenously shows antiarrhythmic effects in a portion of CPVT1 patients and that iPSC derived CM models replicate these individual drug responses. These findings illustrate the potential of iPSC models to individualize drug therapy of inherited diseases.
  • Wu, Ying-Chieh; Sonninen, Tuuli-Maria; Peltonen, Sanni; Koistinaho, Jari; Lehtonen, Sarka (2021)
    The blood-brain barrier (BBB) regulates the delivery of oxygen and important nutrients to the brain through active and passive transport and prevents neurotoxins from entering the brain. It also has a clearance function and removes carbon dioxide and toxic metabolites from the central nervous system (CNS). Several drugs are unable to cross the BBB and enter the CNS, adding complexity to drug screens targeting brain disorders. A well-functioning BBB is essential for maintaining healthy brain tissue, and a malfunction of the BBB, linked to its permeability, results in toxins and immune cells entering the CNS. This impairment is associated with a variety of neurological diseases, including Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Here, we summarize current knowledge about the BBB in neurodegenerative diseases. Furthermore, we focus on recent progress of using human-induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived models to study the BBB. We review the potential of novel stem cell-based platforms in modeling the BBB and address advances and key challenges of using stem cell technology in modeling the human BBB. Finally, we highlight future directions in this area.
  • Balboa, Diego; Weltner, Jere; Eurola, Solja; Trokovic, Ras; Wartiovaara, Kirmo; Otonkoski, Timo (2015)
    CRISPR/Cas9 protein fused to transactivation domains can be used to control gene expression in human cells. In this study, we demonstrate that a dCas9 fusion with repeats of VP16 activator domains can efficiently activate human genes involved in pluripotency in various cell types. This activator in combination with guide RNAs targeted to the OCT4 promoter can be used to completely replace transgenic OCT4 in human cell reprogramming. Furthermore, we generated a chemically controllable dCas9 activator version by fusion with the dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) destabilization domain. Finally, we show that the destabilized dCas9 activator can be used to control human pluripotent stem cell differentiation into endodermal lineages.
  • Malinen, Melina M.; Kanninen, Liisa K.; Corlu, Anne; Isoniemi, Helena M.; Lou, Yan-Ru; Yliperttula, Marjo L.; Urtti, Arto O. (2014)
  • Blom, Tea; Schmiedt, Mia-Lisa; Wong, Andrew M.; Kyttälä, Aija; Soronen, Jarkko; Jauhiainen, Matti; Tyynela, Jaana; Cooper, Jonathan D.; Jalanko, Anu (2013)
  • Kyttala, Aija; Moraghebi, Roksana; Valensisi, Cristina; Kettunen, Johannes; Andrus, Colin; Pasumarthy, Kalyan Kumar; Nakanishi, Mahito; Nishimura, Ken; Ohtaka, Manami; Weltner, Jere; Van Handel, Ben; Parkkonen, Olavi; Sinisalo, Juha; Jalanko, Anu; Hawkins, R. David; Woods, Niels-Bjarne; Otonkoski, Timo; Trokovic, Ras (2016)
    Reports on the retention of somatic cell memory in induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have complicated the selection of the optimal cell type for the generation of iPSC biobanks. To address this issue we compared transcriptomic, epigenetic, and differentiation propensities of genetically matched human iPSCs derived from fibroblasts and blood, two tissues of the most practical relevance for biobanking. Our results show that iPSC lines derived from the same donor are highly similar to each other. However, genetic variation imparts a donor-specific expression and methylation profile in reprogrammed cells that leads to variable functional capacities of iPSC lines. Our results suggest that integration-free, bona fide iPSC lines from fibroblasts and blood can be combined in repositories to form biobanks. Due to the impact of genetic variation on iPSC differentiation, biobanks should contain cells from large numbers of donors.
  • Kiamehr, Mostafa; Viiri, Leena E.; Vihervaara, Terhi; Koistinen, Kaisa M.; Hilvo, Mika; Ekroos, Kim; Kakela, Reijo; Aalto-Setala, Katriina (2017)
    Hepatocyte-like cells (HLCs) differentiated from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) offer an alternative model to primary human hepatocytes to study lipid aberrations. However, the detailed lipid profile of HLCs is yet unknown. In the current study, functional HLCs were differentiated from iPSCs generated from dermal fibroblasts of three individuals by a three-step protocol through the definitive endoderm (DE) stage. In parallel, detailed lipidomic analyses as well as gene expression profiling of a set of lipid-metabolism-related genes were performed during the entire differentiation process from iPSCs to HLCs. Additionally, fatty acid (FA) composition of the cell culture media at different stages was determined. Our results show that major alterations in the molecular species of lipids occurring during DE and early hepatic differentiation stages mainly mirror the quality and quantity of the FAs supplied in culture medium at each stage. Polyunsaturated phospholipids and sphingolipids with a very long FA were produced in the cells at a later stage of differentiation. This work uncovers the previously unknown lipid composition of iPSC-HLCs and its alterations during the differentiation in conjunction with the expression of key lipid-associated genes. Together with biochemical, functional and gene expression measurements, the lipidomic analyses allowed us to improve our understanding of the concerted influence of the exogenous metabolite supply and cellular biosynthesis essential for iPSC-HLC differentiation and function. Importantly, the study describes in detail a cell model that can be applied in exploring, for example, the lipid metabolism involved in the development of fatty liver disease or atherosclerosis.
  • De Gregorio, Roberto; Pulcrano, Salvatore; De Sanctis, Claudia; Volpicelli, Floriana; Guatteo, Ezia; von Oerthel, Lars; Latagliata, Emanuele Claudio; Esposito, Roberta; Piscitelli, Rosa Maria; Perrone-Capano, Carla; Costa, Valerio; Greco, Dario; Puglisi-Allegra, Stefano; Smidt, Marten P.; di Porzio, Umberto; Caiazzo, Massimiliano; Mercuri, Nicola Biagio; Li, Meng; Bellenchi, Gian Carlo (2018)
    The differentiation of dopaminergic neurons requires concerted action of morphogens and transcription factors acting in a precise and well-defined time window. Very little is known about the potential role of microRNA in these events. By performing a microRNA-mRNA paired microarray screening, we identified miR-34b/c among the most upregulated microRNAs during dopaminergic differentiation. Interestingly, miR-34b/c modulates Wnt1 expression, promotes cell cycle exit, and induces dopaminergic differentiation. When combined with transcription factors ASCL1 and NURR1, miR-34b/c doubled the yield of transdifferentiated fibroblasts into dopaminergic neurons. Induced dopaminergic (iDA) cells synthesize dopamine and show spontaneous electrical activity, reversibly blocked by tetrodotoxin, consistent with the electrophysiological properties featured by brain dopaminergic neurons. Our findings point to a role for miR-34b/c in neuronal commitment and highlight the potential of exploiting its synergy with key transcription factors in enhancing in vitro generation of dopaminergic neurons.
  • Lahti, Anna L.; Kujala, Ville J.; Chapman, Hugh; Koivisto, Ari-Pekka; Pekkanen-Mattila, Mari; Kerkela, Erja; Hyttinen, Jari; Kontula, Kimmo; Swan, Heikki; Conklin, Bruce R.; Yamanaka, Shinya; Silvennoinen, Olli; Aalto-Setala, Katriina (2012)
  • Paukkonen, Heli; Kunnari, Mikko; Lauren, Patrick; Hakkarainen, Tiina; Auvinen, Vili-Veli; Oksanen, Timo; Koivuniemi, Raili; Yliperttula, Marjo; Laaksonen, Timo (2017)
    Concentrated 3% and 6.5% anionic nanofibrillar cellulose (ANFC) hydrogels were introduced as matrix reservoirs for controlled delivery applications of small molecules and proteins. A further aim was to study how the freeze-drying and subsequent rehydration of ANFC hydrogel affects the rheological properties and drug release of selected model compounds from the reconstructed hydrogels. It was demonstrated that the 3% and 6.5% ANFC hydrogels can be freeze-dried with suitable excipients into highly porous aerogel structures and redispersed back into the hydrogel form without significant change in the rheological properties. Freeze-drying did not affect the drug release properties from redispersed ANFC hydrogels, indicating that these systems could be stored in the dry form and only redispersed when needed. For large molecules, the diffusion coefficients were significantly smaller when higher ANFC fiber content was used, indicating that the amount of ANFC fibers in the hydrogel can be used to control the release rate. The release of small molecules was controlled with the ANFC fiber content only to a moderate extent. The results indicate that ANFC hydrogel can be used for controlled delivery of several types of molecules and that the hydrogel can be successfully freeze-dried and redispersed.
  • Lauren, Patrick; Somersalo, Petter; Pitkanen, Irina; Lou, Yan-Ru; Urtti, Arto; Partanen, Jouni; Seppala, Jukka; Madetoja, Mari; Laaksonen, Timo; Makitie, Antti; Yliperttula, Marjo (2017)
    Hydrogel nanomaterials, especially those that are of non-human and non-animal origins, have great potential in biomedical and pharmaceutical sciences due to their versatility and inherent soft-tissue like properties. With the ability to simulate native tissue function, hydrogels are potentially well suited for cellular therapy applications. In this study, we have fabricated nano-fibrillar cellulose-alginate (NFCA) suture coatings as biomedical devices to help overcome some of the limitations related to cellular therapy, such as low cell survivability and distribution out of target tissue. The addition of sodium alginate 8% (w/v) increased the NFCA hydrogel viscosity, storage and loss moduli by slightly under one order of magnitude, thus contributing significantly to coating strength. Confocal microscopy showed nearly 100% cell viability throughout the 2-week incubation period within and on the surface of the coating. Additionally, typical morphologies in the dual cell culture of spheroid forming HepG2 and monolayer type SK-HEP-1 were observed. Twelve out of 14 NFCA coated surgical sutures remained intact during the suturing operation with various mice and rat tissue; however, partial peeling off was observed in 2 of the coated sutures. We conclude that NFCA suture coatings could perform as cell-carrier systems for cellular based therapy and post-surgical treatment.
  • Lou, Yan-Ru; Leung, Alan W. (2018)
    Organoids are in vitro cultures of miniature fetal or adult organ-like structures. Their potentials for use in tissue and organ replacement, disease modeling, toxicology studies, and drug discovery are tremendous. Currently, major challenges facing human organoid technology include (i) improving the range of cellular heterogeneity for a particular organoid system, (ii) mimicking the native micro- and matrix-environment encountered by cells within organoids, and (iii) developing robust protocols for the in vitro maturation of organoids that remain mostly fetal-like in cultures. To tackle these challenges, we advocate the principle of reverse engineering that replicates the inner workings of in vivo systems with the goal of achieving functionality and maturation of the resulting organoid structures with the input of minimal intrinsic (cellular) and environmental (matrix and niche) constituents. Here, we present an overview of organoid technology development in several systems that employ cell materials derived from fetal and adult tissues and pluripotent stem cell cultures. We focus on key studies that exploit the self-organizing property of embryonic progenitors and the role of designer matrices and cell-free scaffolds in assisting organoid formation. We further explore the relationship between adult stem cells, niche factors, and other current developments that aim to enhance robust organoid maturation. From these works, we propose a standardized pipeline for the development of future protocols that would help generate more physiologically relevant human organoids for various biomedical applications.
  • Tohonen, Virpi; Katayama, Shintaro; Vesterlund, Liselotte; Jouhilahti, Eeva-Mari; Sheikhi, Mona; Madissoon, Elo; Filippini-Cattaneo, Giuditta; Jaconi, Marisa; Johnsson, Anna; Burglin, Thomas R.; Linnarsson, Sten; Hovatta, Outi; Kere, Juha (2015)
    Transcriptional program that drives human preimplantation development is largely unknown. Here, by using single-cell RNA sequencing of 348 oocytes, zygotes and single blastomeres from 2- to 3-day-old embryos, we provide a detailed analysis of the human preimplantation transcriptome. By quantifying transcript far 50-ends (TFEs), we include in our analysis transcripts that derive from alternative promoters. We show that 32 and 129 genes are transcribed during the transition from oocyte to four-cell stage and from four-to eight-cell stage, respectively. A number of identified transcripts originates from previously unannotated genes that include the PRD-like homeobox genes ARGFX, CPHX1, CPHX2, DPRX, DUXA, DUXB and LEUTX. Employing de novo promoter motif extraction on sequences surrounding TFEs, we identify significantly enriched gene regulatory motifs that often overlap with Alu elements. Our high-resolution analysis of the human transcriptome during preimplantation development may have important implications on future studies of human pluripotent stem cells and cell reprograming.
  • Martin-Lopez, Marta; Maeso-Alonso, Laura; Fuertes-Alvarez, Sandra; Balboa, Diego; Rodriguez-Cortez, Virginia; Weltner, Jere; Diez-Prieto, Inmaculada; Davis, Andrew; Wu, Yaning; Otonkoski, Timo; Flores, Elsa R.; Menendez, Pablo; Marques, Margarita M.; Marin, Maria C. (2017)
    The generation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) by somatic cell reprogramming holds great potential for modeling human diseases. However, the reprogramming process remains very inefficient and a better understanding of its basic biology is required. The mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition (MET) has been recognized as a crucial step for the successful reprogramming of fibroblasts into iPSCs. It has been reported that the p53 tumor suppressor gene acts as a barrier of this process, while its homolog p63 acts as an enabling factor. In this regard, the information concerning the role of the third homolog, p73, during cell reprogramming is limited. Here, we derive total Trp73 knockout mouse embryonic fibroblasts, with or without Trp53, and examine their reprogramming capacity. We show that p73 is required for effective reprogramming by the Yamanaka factors, even in the absence of p53. Lack of p73 affects the early stages of reprogramming, impairing the MET and resulting in altered maturation and stabilization phases. Accordingly, the obtained p73-deficient iPSCs have a defective epithelial phenotype and alterations in the expression of pluripotency markers. We demonstrate that p73 deficiency impairs the MET, at least in part, by hindering BMP pathway activation. We report that p73 is a positive modulator of the BMP circuit, enhancing its activation by DNp73 repression of the Smad6 promoter. Collectively, these findings provide mechanistic insight into the MET process, proposing p73 as an enhancer of MET during cellular reprogramming.
  • Konttinen, Henna; Cabral-da-Silva, Mauricio e Castro; Ohtonen, Sohvi; Wojciechowski, Sara; Shakirzyanova, Anastasia; Caligola, Simone; Giugno, Rosalba; Ishchenko, Yevheniia; Hernández, Damián; Fazaludeen, Mohammad Feroze; Eamen, Shaila; Budia, Mireia Gómez; Fagerlund, Ilkka; Scoyni, Flavia; Korhonen, Paula; Huber, Nadine; Haapasalo, Annakaisa; Hewitt, Alex W.; Vickers, James; Smith, Grady C.; Oksanen, Minna; Graff, Caroline; Kanninen, Katja M.; Lehtonen, Sarka; Propson, Nicholas; Schwartz, Michael P.; Pébay, Alice; Koistinaho, Jari; Ooi, Lezanne; Malm, Tarja (2019)
    Summary Here we elucidate the effect of Alzheimer disease (AD)-predisposing genetic backgrounds, APOE4, PSEN1ΔE9, and APPswe, on functionality of human microglia-like cells (iMGLs). We present a physiologically relevant high-yield protocol for producing iMGLs from induced pluripotent stem cells. Differentiation is directed with small molecules through primitive erythromyeloid progenitors to re-create microglial ontogeny from yolk sac. The iMGLs express microglial signature genes and respond to ADP with intracellular Ca2+ release distinguishing them from macrophages. Using 16 iPSC lines from healthy donors, AD patients and isogenic controls, we reveal that the APOE4 genotype has a profound impact on several aspects of microglial functionality, whereas PSEN1ΔE9 and APPswe mutations trigger minor alterations. The APOE4 genotype impairs phagocytosis, migration, and metabolic activity of iMGLs but exacerbates their cytokine secretion. This indicates that APOE4 iMGLs are fundamentally unable to mount normal microglial functionality in AD.
  • Kurtzeborn, Kristen; Cebrian, Cristina; Kuure, Satu (2018)
    Classically, trophic factors are considered as proteins which support neurons in their growth, survival, and differentiation. However, most neurotrophic factors also have important functions outside of the nervous system. Especially essential renal growth and differentiation regulators are glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs), and fibroblast growth factors (FGFs). Here we discuss how trophic factor-induced signaling contributes to the control of ureteric bud (UB) branching morphogenesis and to maintenance and differentiation of nephrogenic mesenchyme in embryonic kidney. The review includes recent advances in trophic factor functions during the guidance of branching morphogenesis and self-renewal versus differentiation decisions, both of which dictate the control of kidney size and nephron number. Creative utilization of current information may help better recapitulate renal differentiation in vitro, but it is obvious that significantly more basic knowledge is needed for development of regeneration-based renal therapies.