Oct 12, 2022

Yamanaka Factors and Partial Cellular Reprogramming

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension

Prior to this, it was assumed that egg cells (oocytes) would contain a complex array of factors needed to reprogram a somatic cell into becoming an embryonic cell. After all, the feat of transforming an aged egg cell and reprogramming it to make a new animal must be controlled by many factors present in the egg cell, or so they thought. Takahashi and Yamanaka turned this idea upside down when they showed that just four of the Yamanaka factors were needed to achieve this transformation.

They used the Yamanaka factors to reprogram adult mouse fibroblasts (connective tissue cells) back to an embryonic state called pluripotency, a state where the cell behaves like an embryonic stem cell and can become any other cell type in the body.

This discovery paved the way for research into how these Yamanaka factors might be used for cellular rejuvenation and a potential way to combat age-related diseases.

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