Generation of diverse neural cell types through direct conversion

Gayle F Petersen, Padraig M Strappe

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    A characteristic of neurological disorders is the loss of critical populations of cells that the body is unable to replace, thus there has been much interest in identifying methods of generating clinically relevant numbers of cells to replace those that have been damaged or lost. The process of neural direct conversion, in which cells of one lineage are converted into cells of a neural lineage without first inducing pluripotency, shows great potential, with evidence of the generation of a range of functional neural cell types both in vitro and in vivo, through viral and non-viral delivery of exogenous factors, as well as chemical induction methods. Induced neural cells have been proposed as an attractive alternative to neural cells derived from embryonic or induced pluripotent stem cells, with prospective roles in the investigation of neurological disorders, including neurodegenerative disease modelling, drug screening, and cellular replacement for regenerative medicine applications, however further investigations into improving the efficacy and safety of these methods need to be performed before neural direct conversion becomes a clinically viable option. In this review, we describe the generation of diverse neural cell types via direct conversion of somatic cells, with comparison against stem cell-based approaches, as well as discussion of their potential research and clinical applications.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)32-46
    Number of pages15
    JournalWorld Journal of Stem Cells
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 26 Feb 2016


    Dive into the research topics of 'Generation of diverse neural cell types through direct conversion'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this