Principles of early human development and germ cell program from conserved model systems

Kobayashi, Toshihiro and Zhang, Haixin and Tang, walfred and Irie, Naoko and Withey, Sarah and Klisch, Doris and Sybirna, Anastasiya and Contreras, D. and Webb, Robert and Allegrucci, Cinzia and Alberio, Ramiro and Surani, M. (2017) Principles of early human development and germ cell program from conserved model systems. Nature, 546 . pp. 416-420. ISSN 1476-4687

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Abstract

Human primordial germ cells (hPGCs), the precursors of sperm and eggs, originate during week 2-3 of early postimplantation development(1). Using in vitro models of hPGC induction(2-4), recent studies suggest striking mechanistic differences in specification of human and mouse PGCs(5). This may partly be due to the divergence in their pluripotency networks, and early postimplantation development(6-8). Since early human embryos are inaccessible for direct studies, we considered alternatives, including porcine embryos that, as in humans, develop as bilaminar embryonic discs. Here we show that porcine PGCs (pPGCs) originate from the posterior pre-primitive streak competent epiblast by sequential upregulation of SOX17 and BLIMP1 in response to WNT and BMP signalling. Together with human and monkey in vitro models simulating peri-gastrulation development, we show conserved principles for epiblast development for competency for PGC fate, followed by initiation of the epigenetic program(9-11), regulated by a balanced SOX17–BLIMP1 gene dosage. Our combinatorial approach using human, porcine and monkey in vivo and in vitro models, provides synthetic insights on early human development.

Item Type: Article
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Biosciences > Division of Animal Sciences
University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Veterinary Medicine and Science
Identification Number: 10.1038/nature22812
Depositing User: Alberio, Ramiro
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2017 09:40
Last Modified: 21 Jun 2017 09:44
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/43643

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