Delayed BMP4 exposure increases germ cell differentiation in mouse embryonic stem cells

Vol. 55 No. 2 Suppl., 2014
This supplement was not sponsored by Outside Organizations.


Tahereh Talaei-Khozani, Nehleh Zarei Fard, Soghra Bahmanpour, Mansoureh Jaberipour, Ahmah Hosseini, Tahereh Esmaeilpour

Fate mapping studies have revealed that bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) signaling has a key role in segregation of primordial germ cells from proximal epiblast. Adding BMP4 to the culture media of embryonic stem (ES) cells could induce expression of germ cell markers; however, to provide a desired number of germ cells has remained a challenge. In the current study, we intended to establish an in vitro system to obtain reliable germ cells derived from ES cells. Differentiation was induced in ES cells via embryoid body (EB) and monolayer culture system. Cells were cultured with BMP4 from the beginning (++BMP4) or after 48 hours (+BMP4) of culturing for five days. The cultures were assessed for alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity, expression of Oct4, Mvh and c-kit. In EB culture protocol, the expression of Mvh, Oct4 and ALP activity significantly increased in +BMP4 culture condition, but a significant down-regulation in the expression of germ cell markers was shown in ++BMP4 condition compared with the control group. Parallel differentiation experiments using monolayer culture system indicated the number of putative germ cells did not change. In the current study, we compared two differentiation methods (EB and monolayer) to achieve an optimal germ cell production. The EBs with a short exposure time period to BMP4, showing typical characteristics of germ cells. Therefore, our approach provides a strategy for the production of germline cells from ES cells.

Corresponding author: Soghra Bahmanpour; e-mail:

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Maria Comanescu, Giovanni Bussolati

Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC), negative for expression of estrogen and progesterone receptors (ER, PR) and HER2/neu protein, represent a subtype of breast cancer associated with poor prognosis and highly aggressive behavior. The characterization of stem cell in this type of carcinoma could determine the appearance of new ideas concerning origin and evolution. There is an impressive amount of data in the literature related to TNBC and a growing interest for stem cell research during the past years, but there are no data concerning the genetic characterization of stem cells in the context of cell biology of TNBC as compared with associated DCIS. We performed immunohistochemical studies for the expression and distribution of several stem cell-related antigens, focusing on the association of TNBC with DCIS and comparing the presence of stem cells in the invasive and in the in situ component. Optimization of detection, identification and characterization of tumorigenic breast cancer stem cells might permit further identification of targeted treatment.

Corresponding author: Maria Comanescu, MD, PhD; e-mail:

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