26 November 2014
Vol 6, Issue 264

About The Cover

Cover image expansion

ONLINE COVER Second Skin. Patients with the genetic disease epidermolysis bullosa (EB) suffer from severe and painful skin blistering. A new way to treat EB and restore skin integrity could be through the use of the patient's own cells, as demonstrated by Sebastiano et al. The investigators took skin cells from EB patients, converted them into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), then genetically corrected the mutated gene that encodes type VII collagen. The corrected iPSCs were differentiated back into keratinocytes (skin cells) that displayed typical markers, such as E-cadherin (red, on cover) and keratin (green), and formed structured epithelial sheets expressing type VII collagen (purple), suggesting viability for EB treatment. See related research articles by Umegaki-Arao et al. and Wenzel et al. [CREDIT: H. ZHEN/STANFORD UNIVERSITY]