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Part of the series Methods in Molecular Biology pp 1-19

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Ceramide and S1P Signaling in Embryonic Stem Cell Differentiation

  • Guanghu WangAffiliated withDepartment of Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta University
  • , Stefka D. SpassievaAffiliated withDepartment of Molecular and Cellular Medicine, Texas A&M Medical Health Sciences Center
  • , Erhard BieberichAffiliated withDepartment of Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta UniversityDepartment of Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta University Email author 

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Abstract

Bioactive sphingolipids are important regulators for stem cell survival and differentiation. Most recently, we have coined the term “morphogenetic lipids” for sphingolipids that regulate stem cells during embryonic and postnatal development. The sphingolipid ceramide and its derivative, sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P), can act synergistically as well as antagonistically on embryonic stem (ES) cell differentiation. We show here simple as well as state-of-the-art methods to analyze sphingolipids in differentiating ES cells and discuss new protocols to use ceramide and S1P analogs for the guided differentiation of mouse ES cells toward neuronal and glial lineage.

Keywords:

Ceramide Sphingolipid Sphingosine-1-phosphate Neuroprogenitor Oligodendrocyte precursor Apoptosis Teratoma