Articles by Rangarajan Sambathkumar in JoVE
Rapid and Efficient Generation of Recombinant Human Pluripotent Stem Cells by Recombinase-mediated Cassette Exchange in the AAVS1 Locus Laura Ordovás*1, Ruben Boon*1, Mariaelena Pistoni1, Yemiao Chen1, Rangarajan Sambathkumar1, Nicky Helsen1, Jolien Vanhove1, Pieter Berckmans1, Qing Cai1, Kim Vanuytsel1, Susanna Raitano1, Catherine M. Verfaillie1 1Stem Cell Institute, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven Here we report a rapid and efficient gene editing method based on RMCE in the AAVS1 locus of human Pluripotent Stem Cells (hPSCs) that improves upon previously described systems. Using this technique, isogenic lines can be rapidly and reliably generated for proper comparative studies, facilitating transgenesis-mediated research with hPSCs.
Other articles by Rangarajan Sambathkumar on PubMed
Prospectively Isolated NGN3-expressing Progenitors from Human Embryonic Stem Cells Give Rise to Pancreatic Endocrine Cells Stem Cells Translational Medicine. Apr, 2014 | Pubmed ID: 24493854 Pancreatic endocrine progenitors obtained from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) represent a promising source to develop cell-based therapies for diabetes. Although endocrine pancreas progenitor cells have been isolated from mouse pancreata on the basis of Ngn3 expression, human endocrine progenitors have not been isolated yet. As substantial differences exist between human and murine pancreas biology, we investigated whether it is possible to isolate pancreatic endocrine progenitors from differentiating hESC cultures by lineage tracing of NGN3. We targeted the 3' end of NGN3 using zinc finger nuclease-mediated homologous recombination to allow selection of NGN3eGFP(+) cells without disrupting the coding sequence of the gene. Isolated NGN3eGFP(+) cells express PDX1, NKX6.1, and chromogranin A and differentiate in vivo toward insulin, glucagon, and somatostatin single hormone-expressing cells but not to ductal or exocrine pancreatic cells or other endodermal, mesodermal, or ectodermal lineages. This confirms that NGN3(+) cells represent pancreatic endocrine progenitors in humans. In addition, this hESC reporter line constitutes a unique tool that may aid in gaining insight into the developmental mechanisms underlying fate choices in human pancreas and in developing cell-based therapies.
Efficient Recombinase-Mediated Cassette Exchange in HPSCs to Study the Hepatocyte Lineage Reveals AAVS1 Locus-Mediated Transgene Inhibition Stem Cell Reports. Nov, 2015 | Pubmed ID: 26455413 Tools for rapid and efficient transgenesis in "safe harbor" loci in an isogenic context remain important to exploit the possibilities of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). We created hPSC master cell lines suitable for FLPe recombinase-mediated cassette exchange (RMCE) in the AAVS1 locus that allow generation of transgenic lines within 15 days with 100% efficiency and without random integrations. Using RMCE, we successfully incorporated several transgenes useful for lineage identification, cell toxicity studies, and gene overexpression to study the hepatocyte lineage. However, we observed unexpected and variable transgene expression inhibition in vitro, due to DNA methylation and other unknown mechanisms, both in undifferentiated hESC and differentiating hepatocytes. Therefore, the AAVS1 locus cannot be considered a universally safe harbor locus for reliable transgene expression in vitro, and using it for transgenesis in hPSC will require careful assessment of the function of individual transgenes.
Epigenetic Induction of Definitive and Pancreatic Endoderm Cell Fate in Human Fibroblasts Stem Cells International. 2016 | Pubmed ID: 27403168 Reprogramming can occur by the introduction of key transcription factors (TFs) as well as by epigenetic changes. We demonstrated that histone deacetylase inhibitor (HDACi) Trichostatin A (TSA) combined with a chromatin remodeling medium (CRM) induced expression of a number of definitive endoderm and early and late pancreatic marker genes. When CRM was omitted, endoderm/pancreatic marker genes were not induced. Furthermore, treatment with DNA methyltransferase inhibitor (DNMTi) 5-azacytidine (5AZA) CRM did not affect gene expression changes, and when 5AZA was combined with TSA, no further increase in gene expression of endoderm, pancreatic endoderm, and endocrine markers was seen over levels induced with TSA alone. Interestingly, TSA-CRM did not affect expression of pluripotency and hepatocyte genes but induced some mesoderm transcripts. Upon removal of TSA-CRM, the endoderm/pancreatic gene expression profile returned to baseline. Our findings underscore the role epigenetic modification in transdifferentiation of one somatic cell into another. However, full reprogramming of fibroblasts to β-cells will require combination of this approach with TF overexpression and/or culture of the partially reprogrammed cells under β-cell specific conditions.