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Researcher turns skin cells into pain sensing neurons

After more than six years of , and repeated failures that made the quest at times seem futile, Stem Cell Institute (HSCI) researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH) and ’s Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology (HSCRB) have successfully converted mouse and human into pain sensing neurons that respond to a number of stimuli that cause acute and .

[Human Pain Receptor Neurons Developed from Fibroblasts]
This image shows human noxious stimulus detecting produced by converting skin cells with a set of five genes to this new fate — enabling study of ‘pain’ in a dish.
Credit: (c) Liz Buttermore


Harvard University