The use of adult myogenic stem cells as a cell therapy for skeletal muscle regeneration has been attempted for decades, with only moderate success. Myogenic progenitors (MP) made from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are promising candidates for stem cell therapy to regenerate skeletal muscle since they allow allogenic transplantation, can be produced in large quantities, and, as compared to adult myoblasts, present more embryonic-like features and more proliferative capacity in vitro
, which indicates a potential for more self-renewal and regenerative capacity in vivo
. Different approaches have been described to make myogenic progenitors either by gene overexpression or by directed differentiation through culture conditions, and several myopathies have already been modeled using iPSC-MP. However, even though results in animal models have shown improvement from previous work with isolated adult myoblasts, major challenges regarding host response have to be addressed and clinically relevant transplantation protocols are lacking. Despite these challenges we are closer than we think to bringing iPSC-MP towards clinical use for treating human muscle disease and sporting injuries.
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