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Stem Cell Hub, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine CESCG at UC Santa Cruz

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Single-cell mRNA sequencing of iPS-derived neural and glial progenitor cells using the Fluidigm C1 system

Lab information [ Lab website | CIRM grants ]

Experimental design



Direct comparisons of human and non-human primate brain tissue have the potential to reveal molecular pathways underlying remarkable specializations of the human brain. However, chimpanzee tissue is largely inaccessible during neocortical neurogenesis when differences in brain size first appear. To identify human-specific features of cortical development, we leveraged recent innovations that permit generating pluripotent stem cell-derived cerebral organoids from chimpanzee. First, we systematically evaluated the fidelity of organoid models to primary human and macaque cortex, finding organoid models preserve gene regulatory networks related to cell types and developmental processes but exhibit increased metabolic stress. Second, we identified 261 genes differentially expressed in human compared to chimpanzee organoids and macaque cortex. Many of these genes overlap with human-specific segmental duplications and a subset suggest increased PI3K/AKT/mTOR activation in human outer radial glia. Together, our findings establish a platform for systematic analysis of molecular changes contributing to human brain development and evolution.


Establishing Cerebral Organoids as Models of Human-Specific Brain Evolution. Pollen AA et al. Cell 2019 Feb 7;176(4):743-756.e17.

Primary files

Lab analysis

Biomarkers, protocols, clustering or other supplementary files supplied by the lab

Secondary analysis

Expression Matrix (lab-generated) | Expression matrix (UCSC) | QC Metrics

CESCG Center Standard Analysis

FastQC | Picard | RSEM | STAR | bigWig

Tertiary analysis

Cell Browser

Sample Psychic




JCVI BioMarkers

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