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A reference human induced pluripotent stem cell line for large-scale collaborative studies.

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Pantazis, Caroline B 
Yang, Andrian 
Lara, Erika 
McDonough, Justin A 
Blauwendraat, Cornelis 


Human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines are a powerful tool for studying development and disease, but the considerable phenotypic variation between lines makes it challenging to replicate key findings and integrate data across research groups. To address this issue, we sub-cloned candidate human iPSC lines and deeply characterized their genetic properties using whole genome sequencing, their genomic stability upon CRISPR-Cas9-based gene editing, and their phenotypic properties including differentiation to commonly used cell types. These studies identified KOLF2.1J as an all-around well-performing iPSC line. We then shared KOLF2.1J with groups around the world who tested its performance in head-to-head comparisons with their own preferred iPSC lines across a diverse range of differentiation protocols and functional assays. On the strength of these findings, we have made KOLF2.1J and its gene-edited derivative clones readily accessible to promote the standardization required for large-scale collaborative science in the stem cell field.



CRISPR, differentiation, iPSC, karyotype, p53, pluripotent, reference, single-cell, stem cell, whole-genome, Humans, Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells, Cell Differentiation, Gene Editing, Biological Assay

Journal Title

Cell Stem Cell

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Elsevier BV
New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF-R-156)
Silicon Valley Community Foundation (2018-191942 (5022))
Medical Research Council (MR/R015724/1)
Wellcome Trust (211221/Z/18/Z)
European Commission Horizon 2020 (H2020) Societal Challenges (874758)
Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Neurodegeneration Challenge Network, New York Stem Cell Foundation
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