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Stem Cells International
Volume 2012, Article ID 379569, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/379569
Review Article

Drug Discovery Models and Toxicity Testing Using Embryonic and Induced Pluripotent Stem-Cell-Derived Cardiac and Neuronal Cells

1BioTalentum Ltd., 2100 Gödöllö, Hungary
2Molecular Animal Biotechnology Laboratory, Szent Istvan University, 2100 Gödöllö, Hungary
3Department of Farm Animal Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University 3584 CL Utrecht, The Netherlands

Received 25 October 2011; Revised 7 February 2012; Accepted 16 February 2012

Academic Editor: Mohan C. Vemuri

Copyright © 2012 Rahul S. Deshmukh 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.

Abstract

Development of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) using forced expression of specific sets of transcription factors has changed the field of stem cell research extensively. Two important limitations for research application of embryonic stem cells (ESCs), namely, ethical and immunological issues, can be circumvented using iPSCs. Since the development of first iPSCs, tremendous effort has been directed to the development of methods to increase the efficiency of the process and to reduce the extent of genomic modifications associated with the reprogramming procedure. The established lineage-specific differentiation protocols developed for ESCs are being applied to iPSCs, as they have great potential in regenerative medicine for cell therapy, disease modeling either for drug development or for fundamental science, and, last but not least, toxicity testing. This paper reviews efforts aimed at practical development of iPSC differentiation to neural/cardiac lineages and further the use of these iPSCs-derived cells for drug development and toxicity testing.