Comprehensive Analyses of Gene Expressions in The Developing Primate Cochlea: Basic Analyses Toward Inner Ear Regeneration in Human

By June 7, 2019

Hosoya, Makoto1; Ogawa, Kaoru1; Fujioka, Masato1
1 Department of Otolaryngology, Keio University, Tokyo, Japan.

Understanding developmental process of organs and tissue generations is particularly of great importance not only for its scientific value but also its application towards regenerative therapeutics because re-tracking organogenesis is a feasible strategy for regeneration. Particularly, recent advances in cell therapy using stem/progenitor cells enable us to cure damaged, and even lost, organs; In these process, several sources are being used for producing graft cells including tissue precursors, mesenchymal stem cells and even human ES/iPS cells.

To manipulate these cells to obtain appropriate cell types efficiently, detailed knowledge of molecular mechanisms and pathways underlying developmental process in each organogenesis is indispensable. However, we know little about the process, especially in human cochlear development, because of the rarity of chance to assess human fetal samples. In this perspective, non-human primates are useful options to investigate development of hearing organs.

Here, we report comprehensive analyses of gene expressions in the developing primate cochlea. We used a small New World monkey species, common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus), which has recently been used worldwide in CNS studies. We compared developmental stages of cochlea in between marmoset, mouse and human. Many cell fate markers and developmental pathways were also examined. These findings will be useful and applicable for speculating the events occurring in the development of human ear, and eventually for the basic analyses toward inner ear regeneration in human being.