08:13am Saturday 28 March 2020

Abnormally long telomeres in embryonic stem cells

Madrid – Elisa Varela and Ralph P. Schneider of the Telomere and Telomerase Group that is directed by María A. Blasco, together with Sagrario Ortega, head of the Transgenic Animals Group of the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO), recently published a study in PNAS, the prestigious North American scientific journal, about telomere length dynamics of stem cells in different stages of embryogenesis.

Maria A. Blasco’s group had previously discovered that that stem cell lines that derive from the inner mass of the blastocyst have longer telomeres. Contrary to the intuitive
idea that the hyper long telomeres of stem cell lines are inherited from the blastocyst, the CNIO study now shows that unusually long telomere length is acquired in the in
vitro process of derivation of the stem cells.

The findings of this study are especially important for regenerative medicine based on the use of pluripotent embryonic stem cells. Until now, little was known about the mechanism that controlled their telomere length.

About the CNIO:
The Carlos III Health Institute, an institution of the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation, established the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO) in 1998.
The mission of the CNIO is to carry out research of excellence and to offer innovative technologies within the cancer field to the Spanish National Health System. Maria A.
Blasco is the CNIO Director since June 2011.

For more information: www.cnio.es

For further information please contact Jaime de Piniés:
Email: [email protected]
T +34 91 183 2101

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