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Pluripotent Stem Cell Studies Elucidate the Underlying Mechanisms of Early Embryonic Development
Laboratory of Molecular Cell Biology, Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Yue Yang Road, Shanghai 200031, China
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 January 2011; in revised form: 8 March 2011 / Accepted: 21 March 2011 / Published: 24 March 2011
Abstract: Early embryonic development is a multi-step process that is intensively regulated by various signaling pathways. Because of the complexity of the embryo and the interactions between the germ layers, it is very difficult to fully understand how these signals regulate embryo patterning. Recently, pluripotent stem cell lines derived from different developmental stages have provided an in vitro system for investigating molecular mechanisms regulating cell fate decisions. In this review, we summarize the major functions of the BMP, FGF, Nodal and Wnt signaling pathways, which have well-established roles in vertebrate embryogenesis. Then, we highlight recent studies in pluripotent stem cells that have revealed the stage-specific roles of BMP，FGF and Nodal pathways during neural differentiation. These findings enhance our understanding of the stepwise regulation of embryo patterning by particular signaling pathways and provide new insight into the mechanisms underlying early embryonic development.
Keywords: early embryonic development; BMP; FGF; Nodal; Wnt; ESCs; EpiSCs
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MDPI and ACS Style
Li, L.; Jing, N. Pluripotent Stem Cell Studies Elucidate the Underlying Mechanisms of Early Embryonic Development. Genes 2011, 2, 298-312.
Li L, Jing N. Pluripotent Stem Cell Studies Elucidate the Underlying Mechanisms of Early Embryonic Development. Genes. 2011; 2(2):298-312.
Li, Lingyu; Jing, Naihe. 2011. "Pluripotent Stem Cell Studies Elucidate the Underlying Mechanisms of Early Embryonic Development." Genes 2, no. 2: 298-312.