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Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells based Assays Recapture Multiple Properties of Human Astrocytes

The majority of the population of glial cells in the central nervous system consists of astrocytes, and impairment of astrocytes causes various disorders. It is useful to assess the multiple astrocytic properties in order to understand their complex roles in the pathophysiology. Although we can differentiate human astrocytes from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), it remains unknown how we can analyse and reveal the multiple properties of astrocytes in complexed human disease conditions. For this purpose, we tested astrocytic differentiation protocols from feeder-free iPSCs based on the previous method with some modifications. Then, we set up extra- and intracellular assessments of iPSC-derived astrocytes by testing cytokine release, calcium influx, autophagy induction and migration. The results led us to analytic methods with conditions in which iPSC-derived astrocytes behave as in vivo. Finally, we applied these methods for modelling an astrocyte-related disease, Alexander disease. An analytic system using iPSC-derived astrocytes could be used to recapture complexities in human astrocyte diseases.

The following research materials were provided by the RIKEN BRC for use in this research.

Data was updated : April 17, 2024