Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) can be generated from differentiated human and mouse somatic cells using transcription factors such as Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, and c-Myc. It is possible to augment the reprogramming process with chemical compounds, but issues related to low reprogramming efficiencies and, with a number of protocols, residual vector sequences, remain to be resolved. We show here that it is possible to reprogram mouse and human cells to pluripotency by direct transfection of mature double-stranded microRNAs (miRNAs). Our approaches use a combination of mir-200c plus mir-302 s and mir-369 s family miRNAs. Because this reprogramming method does not require vector-based gene transfer, it holds significant potential for biomedical research and regenerative medicine. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.
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