Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) have the capacity for unlimited proliferation and differentiation into a wide range of cell types. Our long-term goals are to define the molecular mechanisms underpinning self-renewal and pluripotency of ESCs with the expectation that this information will, (i) define fundamental mechanisms of early embryonic development and, (ii) generate enabling technology that will give utility to ESCs in the area of regenerative medicine. The specific hypothesis is that Myc family transcription factors are important regulators of ESC self-renewal and pluripotency. This is supported by well defined roles for Myc transcription factors in immortalization of tumor cells and roles for the Myc regulatory pathway in early embryonic development. Using both murine and human ESCs, we will determine mechanisms of stem cell self-renewal using biochemical and genetic approaches. The outcomes of this work wil have important implications for general health sciences since ESCs can potentially be used to cure a wide range of degenerative diseases and for repairing chronic injury. Moreover, they are a valuable tool for understanding human embryonic development.
The Specific Aims are to: 1. define mechanism(s) by which Myc maintains ESCs in a self-renewing, pluripotent state.
This Specific Aim will identify mechanisms of Myc function in self-renewal by characterizing its role in cell cycle control and through the identification of transcriptional targets. This will help elucidate the genetic program underpinning self-renewal and stem cell identity. 2. investigate the relationship between Myc and regulation of self-renewal by the cell cycle machinery. 3. establish mechanisms of self-renewal in human ESCs and to evaluate the role of Myc. Although distinct differences exist between murine and human ESCs, it is likely that common modes of self-renewal regulation will exist. To understand self-renewal of hESCs, we will use information obtained from the mouse ESC model system (Specific Aims 1,2). This information will be crucial for our understanding of human ESC biology and in harnessing their therapeutic potential. The following hESC lines from the NIH Human Embryonic Stem Cell Registry will be used in these studies;BG01, TEO3 and WAO1.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Project (R01)
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Development - 1 Study Section (DEV)
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Ravindranath, Neelakanta
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University of Georgia
Veterinary Sciences
Schools of Earth Sciences/Natur
United States
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Chappell, James; Boward, Ben; Dalton, Stephen (2016) Expanding the Utility of FUCCI Reporters Using FACS-Based Omics Analysis. Methods Mol Biol 1341:101-10
Singh, Amar M; Trost, Robert; Boward, Benjamin et al. (2016) Utilizing FUCCI reporters to understand pluripotent stem cell biology. Methods 101:4-10
Fagnocchi, Luca; Cherubini, Alessandro; Hatsuda, Hiroshi et al. (2016) A Myc-driven self-reinforcing regulatory network maintains mouse embryonic stem cell identity. Nat Commun 7:11903
Singh, Amar M; Sun, Yuhua; Li, Li et al. (2015) Cell-Cycle Control of Bivalent Epigenetic Domains Regulates the Exit from Pluripotency. Stem Cell Reports 5:323-36
Chappell, James; Dalton, Stephen (2013) Roles for MYC in the establishment and maintenance of pluripotency. Cold Spring Harb Perspect Med 3:a014381
Singh, Amar M; Chappell, James; Trost, Robert et al. (2013) Cell-cycle control of developmentally regulated transcription factors accounts for heterogeneity in human pluripotent cells. Stem Cell Reports 1:532-44
Chappell, James; Sun, Yuhua; Singh, Amar et al. (2013) MYC/MAX control ERK signaling and pluripotency by regulation of dual-specificity phosphatases 2 and 7. Genes Dev 27:725-33
Dalton, Stephen (2013) Signaling networks in human pluripotent stem cells. Curr Opin Cell Biol 25:241-6
Singh, Amar M; Bechard, Matthew; Smith, Keriayn et al. (2012) Reconciling the different roles of Gsk3* in ""naive"" and ""primed"" pluripotent stem cells. Cell Cycle 11:2991-6
Singh, Amar M; Reynolds, David; Cliff, Timothy et al. (2012) Signaling network crosstalk in human pluripotent cells: a Smad2/3-regulated switch that controls the balance between self-renewal and differentiation. Cell Stem Cell 10:312-26

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