Will induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) finally replace human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) in the field of regenerative medical research?
Results of a recent study published in Nature Biotechnology argue that they should.
First, some background.
In 2007, Japanese scientist Shinya Yamanaka discovered a method to create fully pluripotent, embryonic-like stem cells from ordinary somatic (body) cells. The ability to do this had been characterized as the “holy grail” of stem cell research and, indeed, Yamanaka’s achievement changed the field of regenerative medicine. So groundbreaking was his discovery that he was awarded the Nobel Prize just five years after announcing it.