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SIRT1 is necessary for proficient telomere elongation and genomic stability of induced pluripotent stem cells.

Authors: Maria Luigia ML. De Bonis, Sagrario S. Ortega, Maria A MA. Blasco
Published: 04/17/2014, Stem cell reports


The NAD-dependent deacetylase SIRT1 is involved in chromatin silencing and genome stability. Elevated SIRT1 levels in embryonic stem cells also suggest a role for SIRT1 in pluripotency. Murine SIRT1 attenuates telomere attrition in vivo and is recruited at telomeres in induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). Because telomere elongation is an iPSC hallmark, we set out to study the role of SIRT1 in pluripotency in the setting of murine embryonic fibroblasts reprogramming into iPSCs. We find that SIRT1 is required for efficient postreprogramming telomere elongation, and that this effect is mediated by a c-MYC-dependent regulation of the mTert gene. We further demonstrate that SIRT1-deficient iPSCs accumulate chromosomal aberrations and show a derepression of telomeric heterochromatin. Finally, SIRT1-deficient iPSCs form larger teratomas that are poorly differentiated, highlighting a role for SIRT1 in exit from pluripotency. In summary, this work demonstrates a role for SIRT1 in the maintenance of pluripotency and modulation of differentiation.

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