The resulting muscle cells are purer and more abundant than any before and successfully colonize damaged muscle when transplanted in vivo. Moreover, when stem cells from mice with muscle disorders are used, the resulting muscle fibers show characteristic disease‐related defects in culture. The time is therefore ripe for drug screening to enhance muscle regeneration and/or correct disease phenotypes, and for a reasoned approach to therapeutic muscle reconstruction.
The repercussions of this discovery extend far beyond the bounds of muscle diseases. This is because of the unique properties of the embryonic tissue ‐ paraxial mesoderm – that generates muscle, and on which Olivier Pourquié is the world expert. A defined set of cells in the paraxial mesoderm ‐ called P2MCs (paraxial mesoderm multipotent cells) ‐ will give rise not only to muscle but also to dermis, vertebral bone and cartilage, and brown fat cells.
The unique expertise of Anagenesis Biotechnologies in generating P2MCs from stem cells will allow us to rapidly build on our proof‐of‐concept muscle study to generate other clinically significant tissues.
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