Book Chapter

Neural differentiation of human embryonic stem cells

M Dottori, MF Pera

Methods in Molecular Biology | Published : 2008


Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) are pluripotent and capable of indefinite self-renewal in vitro. These features make them a highly advantageous source for deriving any cell type of the central and peripheral nervous system. We describe neural induction of human (h)ESCs, by using the bone morphogenic protein inhibitor protein noggin. Neural progenitors derived from noggin-treated hESCs can be propagated as neurospheres and further differentiated in vitro and in vivo to mature neurons and glia. This complete protocol of neural differentiation, from hESCs to mature neuronal cells, can be used as an in vitro model to study human neurogenesis and neurodegeneration. © 2008 Humana Press.