Stem Cell Vitamin Boost

Soon after the exciting discovery of a method to turn human adult cells into stem cells in 2007 came the frustration of actually trying to make that transformation efficient. In creating induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, scientists typically only get 0.01 percent of a sample of human fibroblast (skin) cells to change.

A group led by Duanqing Pei of the Guangzhou Institutes of Biomedicine and Health in China has found that a simple chemical can boost the efficiency by 100-fold–namely, vitamin C.

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