Samantha Phillips

Graduate Student

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Samantha Phillips

Lab Phone

212-639-8510

Human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC)-derived oligodendrocytes (OLs) hold great promise for cell-based therapy of disorders of myelination. There are numerous diseases that affect myelin and subsequent cognitive function where these cells could be of use, but our lab is most interested in cancer therapy-induced cognitive impairment, which affects millions of individuals but has no remedy. This problem is hypothesized to come from damage to myelinating cells and their progenitors. Unfortunately, OLs have been one of the most difficult cells of the nervous system to differentiate from hPSCs, with lengthy protocols acting as a barrier to their in vivo use as a therapeutic. We aim is to utilize our understanding of glial development in vivo to accelerate the differentiation of OLs and their progenitors, OPCs, from hPSCs in vitro. We are using the transcription factor NFIA, which has been identified as a gliogenic switch in neurodevelopment, for this purpose.