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Female human iPSCs retain an inactive X chromosome. Cell Stem Cell 2010 Sep 03;7(3):329-42



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Pubmed Central ID





Generating induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) requires massive epigenome reorganization. It is unclear whether reprogramming of female human cells reactivates the inactive X chromosome (Xi), as in mouse. Here we establish that human (h)iPSCs derived from several female fibroblasts under standard culture conditions carry an Xi. Despite the lack of reactivation, the Xi undergoes defined chromatin changes, and expansion of hiPSCs can lead to partial loss of XIST RNA. These results indicate that hiPSCs are epigenetically dynamic and do not display a pristine state of X inactivation with two active Xs as found in some female human embryonic stem cell lines. Furthermore, whereas fibroblasts are mosaic for the Xi, hiPSCs are clonal. This nonrandom pattern of X chromosome inactivation in female hiPSCs, which is maintained upon differentiation, has critical implications for clinical applications and disease modeling, and could be exploited for a unique form of gene therapy for X-linked diseases.

Author List

Tchieu J, Kuoy E, Chin MH, Trinh H, Patterson M, Sherman SP, Aimiuwu O, Lindgren A, Hakimian S, Zack JA, Clark AT, Pyle AD, Lowry WE, Plath K


Michaela Patterson PhD Assistant Professor in the Cell Biology, Neurobiology and Anatomy department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Cell Culture Techniques
Cell Differentiation
Cellular Reprogramming
Epigenesis, Genetic
Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
X Chromosome Inactivation