Induced pluripotent stem cells (IPS cells), generated by transcription factor-dependent nuclear reprogramming of differentiated somatic cells, are pluripotent stem cell lines that can be propagated indefinitely in culture and maintain the potential to differentiate into any cell type in the body. As iPS cells retain the same genetic make-up as the somatic cell targeted for reprogramming, these cells hold tremendous promise for uncovering novel genetic and biochemical factors that underiie diseases with complex and pooriy understood genetic influences, such as diabetes. The DRC iPS Core will establish and maintain a centralized facility for the reliable and consistent generation and propagation of reprogrammed IPS cells for use in cutting-edge research into the molecular and cellular pathologies underiying diabetes and its complications. The Core will enhance the scientific productivity of DRC projects in multiple ways: (1) By standardizing medical assessments and data collection from human subjects, as well as cell isolation protocols and reagents, the Core will allow direct comparison of data across projects and remove variability resulting from potential technical or biological differences in patient populations or cell handling. (2) As IPS cell production and propagation can be technically challenging, the Core will ensure reproducibility and comparability of results, by enforcing rigorous standards of quality control. (3) The Core will provide advanced training for investigators desiring to introduce IPS technologies into their own laboratories, increasing the currently small number of laboratories in the Boston area skilled in the isolation and culture of IPS cells. (4) The Core will provide expert advice on experimental design, regulatory documentation and interpretation of results, based on the extensive expertise of the Core Directors and Staff. (5) As the Core will be utilized by multiple labs, it will provide a venue for scientific interaction, fostering greater exchange of information among DRC Investigators and promoting productive collaborations with other Boston-based research groups. (6) The Core will help to develop new technologies that support center activities, including most notably the optimization of methods for deriving iPS cells from people with diabetes and the integration of new reprogramming technologies, including integration-free IPS generation and generation ofiPS cells from peripheral blood samples, as these become robust and available. These activities will benefit DRC Investigators and significantly accelerate advances in diabetes research.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZDK1-GRB-S)
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Joslin Diabetes Center
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