Stem Cell Reprogramming/mRNA modification
The untapped potential of stem cells as tools for disease modeling and regenerative medicine has been a topic embroiled in controversy for over 30 years, primarily due to the ethical issues surrounding their typical source, in vitro fertilization. Researchers have been seeking a source for non-embryonic stem cells for some time. Adult bone marrow cells and placental blood cells have been strong candidates, but not complete solutions. However, an exciting new finding by Warren et al. may hold the key. This cross-institutional team determined an efficient means of reprogramming multiple human cell types using modified mRNA that can express the four primary reprogramming proteins. These cells are referred to as induced pluripotency stem cells (iPSCs). Warren et al. found that enzymatically synthesized RNA employing 5-methyl-CTP (Cat No. N-1014) and pseudo-UTP (Cat No. N-1019) effectively evaded the cell’s antiviral response, a crucial component in their success. TriLink provides not only the modified triphosphates for enzymatic RNA synthesis (below), but also manufactures custom mRNA with these modifications.