Projects per year
The ability to produce differentiated cell types at will offers one approach to cell therapy and therefore the treatment and cure of degenerative diseases such as diabetes and liver failure. Until recently it was thought that differentiated cells could only be produced from embryonic or adult stem cells. However, we now know that this is not the case, and there is a growing body of evidence to show that one differentiated cell type can convert into a completely different phenotype (transdifferentiation). Understanding the cellular and molecular basis of transdifferentiation will allow us to reprogram cells for transplantation. This approach will complement the use of embryonic and adult stem cells in the treatment of degenerative disorders. In this review, we will focus on some well-documented examples of transdifferentiation.