Morphogen-driven human iPSCs differentiation in 3D in vitro models of gastrulation is precluded by physical confinement: https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2023.03.29.534685v1

Research output: Working paper/PreprintPreprint

Abstract

In early human development, gastrulation is tightly associated with lineage specification. The interplay between mechanical forces and biochemical signals during these processes is poorly understood. Here, we dissect the effects of biochemical cues and physical confinement on a 3D in vitro model of gastrulation that uses spheroids formed from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). First, we compare self-renewing versus differentiating media conditions in free-floating cultures, and observe the emergence of organised tri-germ layers. In these unconfined cultures, BMP4 exposure induces polarised expression of SOX17 in conjunction with spheroid elongation. We then physically confine spheroids using PEG-peptide hydrogels and observe dramatically reduced SOX17 expression, albeit rescued if gels that soften over time are used instead. Our study combines high-content imaging, synthetic hydrogels and hiPSCs-derived models of early development to define the drivers causing changes in shape and emergence of germ layers.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 29 Mar 2023

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