Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs)acquire genetic changes during their propagation in culture that can affect their use in research and future therapies. To identify the key genes involved in selective advantage during culture adaptation and tumorigenicity of hPSCs, we generated a genome-wide screening system for genes and pathways that provide a growth advantage either in vitro or in vivo. We found that hyperactivation of the RAS pathway confers resistance to selection with the hPSC-specific drug PluriSIn-1. We also identified that inactivation of the RHO-ROCK pathway gives growth advantage during culture adaptation. Last, we demonstrated the importance of the PI3K-AKT and HIPPO pathways for the teratoma formation process. Our screen revealed key genes and pathways relevant to the tumorigenicity and survival of hPSCs and should thus assist in understanding and confronting their tumorigenic potential.
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- Cell Biology
- Stem Cells Research