The promise of using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) for cellular therapies has been hampered by the lack of easily isolatable and well characterized source cells whose genomes have undergone minimal changes during their processing. Blood-derived late-outgrowth endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) are used for disease modeling and have potential therapeutic uses including cell transplantation and the translation of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) derivatives. However, the current isolation of EPCs has been inconsistent and requires at least 40−80 mL of blood, limiting their wider use. In addition, previous EPC reprogramming methods precluded the translation of EPC-derived iPSCs to the clinic. Here a series of clinically-compatible advances in the isolation and reprogramming of EPCs is presented, including a reduction of blood sampling volumes to 10 mL and use of highly efficient RNA-based reprogramming methods together with autologous human serum, resulting in clinically relevant iPSCs carrying minimal copy number variations (CNVs) compared to their parent line.
- Clinical translation
- Self-replicating mRNA