A new study has demonstrated successful reprogramming of myofibroblasts into hepatocytes in a mouse model of chemically induced liver fibrosis. The researchers virally induced expression of several transcription factors in fibrosis-promoting myofibroblasts to convert these cells into hepatocytes. This in vivo reprogramming resulted in reduced liver fibrosis, suggesting that this approach could present a new regenerative treatment strategy after liver damage.
Song, G. et al. Direct reprogramming of hepatic myofibroblasts into hepatocytes in vivo attenuates liver fibrosis. Cell Stem Cell http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.stem.2016.01.010 (2016)
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Ridler, C. Hepatocytes induced from myofibroblasts in vivo. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 13, 250 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1038/nrgastro.2016.62