Generation of hiPSC-derived skeletal muscle cells: exploiting the potential of skeletal muscle-derived hiPSCs


  • E. Metzler
  • H. Escobar
  • D.Y. Sunaga-Franze
  • S. Sauer
  • S. Diecke
  • S. Spuler


  • Biomedicines


  • Biomedicines 10 (5): 1204


  • Cell therapies for muscle wasting disorders are on the verge of becoming a realistic clinical perspective. Muscle precursor cells derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) represent the key to unrestricted cell numbers indispensable for the treatment of generalized muscle wasting such as cachexia or intensive care unit (ICU)-acquired weakness. We asked how the cell of origin influences efficacy and molecular properties of hiPSC-derived muscle progenitor cells. We generated hiPSCs from primary muscle stem cells and from peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of the same donors (n = 4) and compared their molecular profiles, myogenic differentiation potential, and ability to generate new muscle fibers in vivo. We show that reprogramming into hiPSCs from primary muscle stem cells was faster and 35 times more efficient than from blood cells. Global transcriptome comparison revealed significant differences, but differentiation into induced myogenic cells using a directed transgene-free approach could be achieved with muscle- and PBMC-derived hiPSCs, and both cell types generated new muscle fibers in vivo. Differences in myogenic differentiation efficiency were identified with hiPSCs generated from individual donors. The generation of muscle-stem-cell-derived hiPSCs is a fast and economic method to obtain unrestricted cell numbers for cell-based therapies in muscle wasting disorders, and in this aspect are superior to blood-derived hiPSCs.