Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells

Date:
October 11, 2012
Source:
Université Libre de Bruxelles
Summary:
The generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells could allow the treatment of patients, which suffer from thyroid hormone deficiency due to defective function, or abnormal development of the thyroid gland. Researchers recently developed a protocol that allowed for the first time the efficient generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells in mice.

The generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells could allow the treatment of patients, which suffer from thyroid hormone deficiency due to defective function, or abnormal development of the thyroid gland. The team of Sabine Costagliola at the IRIBHM (Université Libre de Bruxelles) recently developed a protocol that allowed for the first time the efficient generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells in mice and published the results of their studies in the scientific journal Nature.

Thyroid hormones are a class of iodide-containing molecules that play a critical role in the regulation of various body function including growth, metabolism and heart function and that are crucial for normal brain development. The thyroid gland, an endocrine organ that has been specialized in trapping iodide, is the only organ where these hormones are produced. It is, however, of note that one out of 3000 human newborns is born with congenital hypothyroidism, a condition characterized by insufficient production of thyroid hormones. In the absence of a medical treatment with thyroid hormones -- initiated during the first days after birth -- the child will be affected by an irreversible mental retardation. Moreover, a life-long hormonal treatment is necessary in order to maintain proper regulation of growth and general metabolism.

By employing a protocol in which two important genes can be transiently induced in undifferentiated stem cells, the researchers at IRIBHM were able to efficiently push the differentiation of stem cells into thyrocytes, the primary cell type responsible for thyroid hormone production in the thyroid gland.

A first exciting finding of these studies was the development of functional thyroid tissue already within the culture dishes. As a next step, the team of Sabine Costagliola transplanted the stem-cell-derived thyrocytes into mice lacking a functional thyroid gland. Four weeks after transplantation, the researchers observed that transplanted mice had re-established normal levels of thyroid hormones in their blood and were rescued from the symptoms associated with thyroid hormone deficiency. These findings have several important implications. First, the cell system employed by the IRIBHM group provides a vital tool to better characterize the molecular processes associated with embryonic thyroid development. Second, the results of the transplantation studies open new avenues for the treatment of thyroid hormone deficiency but also for the replacement of thyroid tissue in patients suffering from thyroid cancer.

The researchers are currently developing a similar protocol based on human stem cells and explore ways to generate functional human thyroid tissue by reprogramming pluripotent stem cells (iPS) derived from skin cells.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Université Libre de Bruxelles. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Francesco Antonica, Dominika Figini Kasprzyk, Robert Opitz, Michelina Iacovino, Xiao-Hui Liao, Alexandra Mihaela Dumitrescu, Samuel Refetoff, Kathelijne Peremans, Mario Manto, Michael Kyba, Sabine Costagliola. Generation of functional thyroid from embryonic stem cells. Nature, 2012; DOI: 10.1038/nature11525

Cite This Page:

Université Libre de Bruxelles. "Generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121011085217.htm>.
Université Libre de Bruxelles. (2012, October 11). Generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121011085217.htm
Université Libre de Bruxelles. "Generation of functional thyroid tissue from stem cells." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121011085217.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) — Researchers are puzzled as to why obesity rates remain relatively stable as average waistlines continue to expand. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Calling the Ebola outbreak in West Africa a potential threat to global security, President Barack Obama is ordering 3,000 U.S. military personnel to the stricken region amid worries that the outbreak is spiraling out of control. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Nearly $1.0 billion dollars is needed to fight the Ebola outbreak raging in west Africa, the United Nations say, warning that 20,000 could be infected by year end. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins