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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013, Article ID 430290, 11 pages
Review Article

Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells from Basic Research to Potential Clinical Applications in Cancer

1National Cancer Institute (INCA), Bone Marrow Transplantation Center (CEMO), Laboratory Division, 20230-130 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
2Mathematics and Statistics Institute, Federal Fluminense University (UFF), 24020-140 Niterói, RJ, Brazil
3State University of Rio de Janeiro (UERJ), Roberto Alcântara Gomes Biology Institute, Department of Biophysics and Biometrics, 20551-030 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil

Received 12 August 2013; Accepted 15 September 2013

Academic Editor: Ken-ichi Isobe

Copyright © 2013 Teresa de Souza Fernandez et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) are derived from a direct reprogramming of human somatic cells to a pluripotent stage through ectopic expression of specific transcription factors. These cells have two important properties, which are the self-renewal capacity and the ability to differentiate into any cell type of the human body. So, the discovery of hiPSCs opens new opportunities in biomedical sciences, since these cells may be useful for understanding the mechanisms of diseases in the production of new diseases models, in drug development/drug toxicity tests, gene therapies, and cell replacement therapies. However, the hiPSCs technology has limitations including the potential for the development of genetic and epigenetic abnormalities leading to tumorigenicity. Nowadays, basic research in the hiPSCs field has made progress in the application of new strategies with the aim to enable an efficient production of high-quality of hiPSCs for safety and efficacy, necessary to the future application for clinical practice. In this review, we show the recent advances in hiPSCs’ basic research and some potential clinical applications focusing on cancer. We also present the importance of the use of statistical methods to evaluate the possible validation for the hiPSCs for future therapeutic use toward personalized cell therapies.