Since the discovery of induced pluripotent stem cells in 2006, a great deal of basic research has been done to understand how to produce, manipulate, and utilize the stem cell type. In addition to this important basic research, a great deal of applied (“translational”) results has been done with the cell type. Induced pluripotent stem cells (also called iPS cells or iPSCs) are revolutionizing regenerative medicine because they represent a potential route for producing patient-specific stem cells for research or clinical use.
In the future, iPS cells will facilitate progress in personalized medicine by allowing a patient to use his or her own cells. In addition, iPSCs also show great promise in other areas, such as phamaco-toxicological screening, by allowing disease modeling and safety assessment of potential new drugs under development, in short, facilitating the study of a “disease in a dish.”