Title

Identifying Markers of Stem Cell Differentiation Through QPCR Quantification

School Name

Governor's School for Science & Mathematics

Grade Level

12th Grade

Presentation Topic

Cell and Molecular Biology

Presentation Type

Mentored

Mentor

Mentor: Ting Wang, Washington University School of Medicine

Abstract

Stem cells provide the answers to all biological questions. These undifferentiated stem cells turn into specialized cells through growth factors and other signaling molecules. In clinical application, stem cells can be designed for specific treatments to treat illnesses and diseases. However, the way in which stem cells differentiate is still unknown. We know that growth factors can turn on certain signals and push a stem cell toward a certain fate but, we do not know which signaling molecules are used. The changing of gene expression through modifications to chromatin structure is known as epigenetics. The understanding of how epigenetics work in differentiated cells would allow researchers to delve deeper and answer the questions no one knows. However, to study the epigenetics of a differentiated cell, one must be able to confirm the identity of a differentiated stem cell. We developed methods to confirm differentiated cell types. Using primers designed for specific genes in Astrocyte, Oligodendrocyte, and Motor Neuron cell samples, we ran qPCR quantification to amplify specific genes in the differentiated neural cell samples. A total of 11 genes were amplified in differentiated cell samples, 8 expressed in Oligodendrocytes, 1 expressed in Motor Neurons, and 1 expressed in Astrocytes. We identified markers of stem cell differentiation which allow the further development of epigenetic exploration.

Location

Wall 209

Start Date

3-25-2017 9:45 AM

Presentation Format

Oral and Written

Group Project

No

COinS
 
Mar 25th, 9:45 AM

Identifying Markers of Stem Cell Differentiation Through QPCR Quantification

Wall 209

Stem cells provide the answers to all biological questions. These undifferentiated stem cells turn into specialized cells through growth factors and other signaling molecules. In clinical application, stem cells can be designed for specific treatments to treat illnesses and diseases. However, the way in which stem cells differentiate is still unknown. We know that growth factors can turn on certain signals and push a stem cell toward a certain fate but, we do not know which signaling molecules are used. The changing of gene expression through modifications to chromatin structure is known as epigenetics. The understanding of how epigenetics work in differentiated cells would allow researchers to delve deeper and answer the questions no one knows. However, to study the epigenetics of a differentiated cell, one must be able to confirm the identity of a differentiated stem cell. We developed methods to confirm differentiated cell types. Using primers designed for specific genes in Astrocyte, Oligodendrocyte, and Motor Neuron cell samples, we ran qPCR quantification to amplify specific genes in the differentiated neural cell samples. A total of 11 genes were amplified in differentiated cell samples, 8 expressed in Oligodendrocytes, 1 expressed in Motor Neurons, and 1 expressed in Astrocytes. We identified markers of stem cell differentiation which allow the further development of epigenetic exploration.