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Protein & Cell

, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp 91–97 | Cite as

Converted neural cells: induced to a cure?

  • Weiqi Zhang
  • Shunlei Duan
  • Ying Li
  • Xiuling Xu
  • Jing QuEmail author
  • Weizhou ZhangEmail author
  • Guang-Hui LiuEmail author
Mini-Review

Abstract

Many neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and others often occur as a result of progressive loss of structure or function of neurons. Recently, many groups were able to generate neural cells, either differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) or converted from somatic cells. Advances in converted neural cells have opened a new era to ease applications for modeling diseases and screening drugs. In addition, the converted neural cells also hold the promise for cell replacement therapy (Kikuchi et al., 2011; Krencik et al., 2011; Kriks et al., 2011; Nori et al., 2011; Rhee et al., 2011; Schwartz et al., 2012). Here we will mainly discuss most recent progress on using converted functional neural cells to treat neurological diseases and highlight potential clinical challenges and future perspectives.

Keywords

converted neural cell pluripotent stem cell transdifferentiation transplantation neurodegenerative diseases 

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Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Laboratory of Biomacromolecules, Institute of BiophysicsChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.Laboratory of Gene Regulation and Signal Transduction, Department of Pharmacology, School of MedicineUniversity of CaliforniaSan Diego, La JollaUSA

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