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. 2014 Jan;141(2):245-52.
doi: 10.1242/dev.098269.

How to Make a Primordial Germ Cell

Free article

How to Make a Primordial Germ Cell

Erna Magnúsdóttir et al. Development. .
Free article


Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are the precursors of sperm and eggs, which generate a new organism that is capable of creating endless new generations through germ cells. PGCs are specified during early mammalian postimplantation development, and are uniquely programmed for transmission of genetic and epigenetic information to subsequent generations. In this Primer, we summarise the establishment of the fundamental principles of PGC specification during early development and discuss how it is now possible to make mouse PGCs from pluripotent embryonic stem cells, and indeed somatic cells if they are first rendered pluripotent in culture.

Keywords: Epigenetic programming; Primordial germ cells; Specification; Transcription factors.

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