Preimplantation genetic diagnosis as a novel source of embryos for stem cell research


The generation of human embryonic stem (hES) cells has captured the public and professional imagination, largely due their potential as a means of overcoming many debilitating and degenerative diseases by cell replacement therapy. Despite this potential, few well-characterized hES cell lines have been derived. Indeed, in the UK, despite several centres having been active in this area for more than 2 years, there are as yet no published reports of human embryonic stem cells having been generated. Part of the reason for this lack of progress may relate to the quality of embryos available for research. Embryos surplus to therapeutic requirements following routine assisted reproduction treatment are often of poor quality and a large proportion may be aneuploid. This study reports a new approach to hES cell derivation. Embryos surplus to therapeutic requirements following preimplantation genetic diagnosis were used. Although unsuitable for embryo transfer due to the high risk of genetic disease, these embryos are from fertile couples and thus may be of better quality than fresh embryos surplus to assisted reproduction treatment cycles. Embryos donated after cryopreservation were also used, and putative hES lines were derived from both sources of embryos. The cell lines described here are thought to be the first reported hES cell lines to have been derived in the UK.

Authors Pickering SJ, Braude PR, Patel M, Burns CJ, Trussler J, Bolton V, Minger S
Journal Reproductive biomedicine online
Publication Date 2003 Oct;7(3):353-64
PubMed 14653899
DOI 10.1016/s1472-6483(10)61877-9

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