Induced neural stem cells (iNSCs) in neurodegenerative diseases
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- Hermann, A. & Storch, A. J Neural Transm (2013) 120: 19. doi:10.1007/s00702-013-1042-9
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Recent advances in somatic cell reprogramming is one of the most important developments in neuroscience in the last decades since it offers for the first time the opportunity to work with disease/patient-specific neurons or other neural cell types. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) can be differentiated into all cell types of the body enabling investigations not only on neurons but also on muscle or endothelial cells which are cell types often also of great interest in neurodegenerative diseases. The novel technology of direct lineage conversion of somatic cells into neurons (induced neurons; iNs) or into expandable multipotent neural stem cells (induced neural stem cells; iNSCs) provides interesting alternatives to the iPSC technology. These techniques have the advantage of easier cell culture, but only neurons (iNs) or neuroectodermal cells (iNSCs) can be generated. Although there are several open questions coming along with these new neural cell types, they hold great promises for both cell replacement and cell modelling of neurodegenerative diseases.