Aberrant hiPSCs-derived from human keratinocytes differentiates into 3D retinal organoids that acquire mature photoreceptors

Rupendra Shrestha 1 2Yao-Tseng Wen 2Dah-Ching Ding 1 3Rong-Kung Tsai 1 2
  1. Institute of Medical Sciences, Tzu Chi University, Hualien 970, Taiwan.
  2. Institute of Eye Research, Hualien Tzu Chi General Hospital, Hualien 970, Taiwan.
  3. Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Hualien Tzu Chi General Hospital, Hualien 970, Taiwan.

Type: Research Article  DOI: 10.3390/cells8010036

Absrtact: Human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC)-derived three-dimensional retinal organoids are a new platform for studying the organoidogenesis. However, recurrent genomic aberration, acquired during generation of hiPSCs, limit its biomedical application and/or aberrant hiPSCs has not been evaluated for generation of differentiated derivatives, such as organoids and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). In this study, we efficiently differentiated mosaic hiPSCs into retinal organoids containing mature photoreceptors. The feeder-free hiPSCs were generated from the human epidermal keratinocytes that were rapid in process with improved efficiency over several passages and maintained pluripotency. But, hiPSCs were cytogenetically mosaic with normal and abnormal karyotypes, while copy number variation analysis revealed the loss of chromosome 8q. Despite this abnormality, the stepwise differentiation of hiPSCs to form retinal organoids was autonomous and led to neuronal lamination. Furthermore, the use of a Notch inhibitor, DAPT, at an early timepoint from days 29⁻42 of culture improved the specification of the retinal neuron and the use of retinoic acid at days 70⁻120 led to the maturation of photoreceptors. hiPSC-derived retinal organoids acquired all subtypes of photoreceptors, such as RHODOPSINB-OPSIN and R/G-OPSIN. Additionally, the advanced maturation of photoreceptors was observed, revealing the development of specific sensory cilia and the formation of the outer-segment disc. This report is the first to show that hiPSCs with abnormal chromosomal content are permissive to the generation of three-dimensional retinal organoids.