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《中国科学:生命科学(英文版)》 2018-01
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Function of FEZF1 during early neural differentiation of human embryonic stem cells

Xin Liu;Pei Su;Lisha Lu;Zicen Feng;Hongtao Wang;Jiaxi Zhou;State Key Laboratory of Experimental Hematology, Institute of Hematology & Blood Diseases Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College;Center for Stem Cell Medicine, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Department of Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine, Peking Union Medical College;  
The understanding of the mechanism underlying human neural development has been hampered due to lack of a cellular system and complicated ethical issues. Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) provide an invaluable model for dissecting human development because of unlimited self-renewal and the capacity to differentiate into nearly all cell types in the human body. In this study,using a chemical defined neural induction protocol and molecular profiling, we identified Fez family zinc finger 1 (FEZF1) as a potential regulator of early human neural development. FEZF1 is rapidly up-regulated during neural differentiation in hESCs and expressed before PAX6, a well-established marker of early human neural induction. We generated FEZF1-knockout H1 hESC lines using CRISPR-CAS9 technology and found that depletion of FEZF1 abrogates neural differentiation of hESCs. Moreover,loss of FEZF1 impairs the pluripotency exit of hESCs during neural specification, which partially explains the neural induction defect caused by FEZF1 deletion. However, enforced expression of FEZF1 itself fails to drive neural differentiation in hESCs,suggesting that FEZF1 is necessary but not sufficient for neural differentiation from hESCs. Taken together, our findings identify one of the earliest regulators expressed upon neural induction and provide insight into early neural development in human.
【Fund】: supported by National Basic Research Program of China (2015CB964902 to Jiaxi Zhou and SQ2016ZY05002105 to Hongtao Wang);; CAMS Initiative for Innovative Medicine (2016-I2M-1-018 2016-I2M-3-002);; National Natural Science Foundation of China (81530008 31671541 to Jiaxi Zhou 31500949 to Hongtao Wang);; Tianjin Natural Science Foundation (16JCZDJC33100 to Jiaxi Zhou);; 3332015128 supported by PUMC Youth Fund and Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities to Dr. Hongtao Wang
【CateGory Index】: R321
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