Integrated analysis of hematopoietic differentiation outcomes and molecular characterization reveals unbiased differentiation capacity and minor transcriptional memory in HPC/HSC-iPSCs

Stem Cell Res Ther. 2017 Jan 23;8(1):13. doi: 10.1186/s13287-016-0466-1.


Background: Transcription factor-mediated reprogramming can reset the epigenetics of somatic cells into a pluripotency compatible state. Recent studies show that induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) always inherit starting cell-specific characteristics, called epigenetic memory, which may be advantageous, as directed differentiation into specific cell types is still challenging; however, it also may be unpredictable when uncontrollable differentiation occurs. In consideration of biosafety in disease modeling and personalized medicine, the availability of high-quality iPSCs which lack a biased differentiation capacity and somatic memory could be indispensable.

Methods: Herein, we evaluate the hematopoietic differentiation capacity and somatic memory state of hematopoietic progenitor and stem cell (HPC/HSC)-derived-iPSCs (HPC/HSC-iPSCs) using a previously established sequential reprogramming system.

Results: We found that HPC/HSCs are amenable to being reprogrammed into iPSCs with unbiased differentiation capacity to hematopoietic progenitors and mature hematopoietic cells. Genome-wide analyses revealed that no global epigenetic memory was detectable in HPC/HSC-iPSCs, but only a minor transcriptional memory of HPC/HSCs existed in a specific tetraploid complementation (4 N)-incompetent HPC/HSC-iPSC line. However, the observed minor transcriptional memory had no influence on the hematopoietic differentiation capacity, indicating the reprogramming of the HPC/HSCs was nearly complete. Further analysis revealed the correlation of minor transcriptional memory with the aberrant distribution of H3K27me3.

Conclusions: This work provides a comprehensive framework for obtaining high-quality iPSCs from HPC/HSCs with unbiased hematopoietic differentiation capacity and minor transcriptional memory.

Keywords: Differentiation; Hematopoietic progenitor and stem cells; Induced pluripotent stem cells; Transcriptional memory.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation*
  • Cellular Reprogramming
  • Coculture Techniques
  • DNA Methylation
  • Epigenesis, Genetic
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cells / cytology
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cells / metabolism*
  • Histones / genetics
  • Histones / metabolism
  • Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells / cytology
  • Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • RNA / chemistry
  • RNA / isolation & purification
  • RNA / metabolism
  • Sequence Analysis, RNA
  • Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Histones
  • Transcription Factors
  • RNA