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Academic report: Derivation and application of spermatid-like haploid embryonic stem cells

Dr. Jinsong Li, from Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, visited College of Life Sciences, Nanjing Normal University for academic exchange, and gave an excellent lecture on “Derivation and application of spermatid-like haploid embryonic stem cells” on 29 Nov, 2017. Dr. Li is an introduce talents of hundreds people plan in Chinese Academy of Sciences, National Outstanding Youth Fund winners.

In this presentation, Dr. Li introduced that the generation of androgenetic haploid embryonic stem cells (AG-haESCs) that can support full-term embryonic development upon injection into MII oocytes, leading to the generation of semi-cloned (SC) mice. However, one major drawback of this study is the frequently observed aberrant development of AG-haESC-derived embryos and the very low birth rate of healthy SC mice (around 2% of total SC embryos); this greatly restricts the applications of AG-haESCs. Recently, they have shown that AG-haESCs carrying deletions in the DMRs (differentially DNA methylated regions) controlling two paternally repressed imprinted genes, H19 and Gtl2, designated as DKO-AG-haESCs, can efficiently support the generation of SC pups at a rate of 20%. they propose that this new technology is feasible for medium-scale targeted screening at organism level, especially for developmental phenotypes, using the appropriate sgRNA libraries targeting preselected candidate genes. They will test this hypothesis and will study the development of primordial germ cells (PGCs) in vivo using “spermatid-like” haploid cell-mediated genetic screening system.