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Cardiovascular Disorders

Fibroblast Growth Factor-10 Promotes Cardiomyocyte Differentiation from Embryonic and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
Published: Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Author: Sunny Sun-Kin Chan et al.

by Sunny Sun-Kin Chan, Hui-Jing Li, Ying-Chang Hsueh, Desy S. Lee, Jyh-Hong Chen, Shiaw-Min Hwang, Chen-Yun Chen, Emily Shih, Patrick C. H. Hsieh


The fibroblast growth factor (FGF) family is essential to normal heart development. Yet, its contribution to cardiomyocyte differentiation from stem cells has not been systemically studied. In this study, we examined the mechanisms and characters of cardiomyocyte differentiation from FGF family protein treated embryonic stem (ES) cells and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells.

Methodology/Principal Findings

We used mouse ES cells stably transfected with a cardiac-specific a-myosin heavy chain (aMHC) promoter-driven enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) and mouse iPS cells to investigate cardiomyocyte differentiation. During cardiomyocyte differentiation from mouse ES cells, FGF-3, -8, -10, -11, -13 and -15 showed an expression pattern similar to the mesodermal marker Brachyury and the cardiovascular progenitor marker Flk-1. Among them, FGF-10 induced cardiomyocyte differentiation in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. FGF-10 neutralizing antibody, small molecule FGF receptor antagonist PD173074 and FGF-10 and FGF receptor-2 short hairpin RNAs inhibited cardiomyocyte differentiation. FGF-10 also increased mouse iPS cell differentiation into cardiomyocyte lineage, and this effect was abolished by FGF-10 neutralizing antibody or PD173074. Following Gene Ontology analysis, microarray data indicated that genes involved in cardiac development were upregulated after FGF-10 treatment. In vivo, intramyocardial co-administration of FGF-10 and ES cells demonstrated that FGF-10 also promoted cardiomyocyte differentiation.


FGF-10 induced cardiomyocyte differentiation from ES cells and iPS cells, which may have potential for translation into clinical applications.