Plasticity of the inner cell mass in mouse blastocyst is restricted by the activity of FGF/MAPK pathway

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • External authors:
  • M. Wigger
  • K, Kisielewska
  • Katarzyna Teresa Filimonow
  • M. Maleszewski
  • Aneta Suwinska


In order to ensure successful development, cells of the early mammalian embryo must differentiate to either trophectoderm (TE) or inner cell mass (ICM), followed by epiblast (EPI) or primitive endoderm (PE) specification within the ICM. Here, we deciphered the mechanism that assures the correct order of these sequential cell fate decisions. We revealed that TE-deprived ICMs derived from 32-cell blastocysts are still able to reconstruct TE during in vitro culture, confirming totipotency of ICM cells at this stage. ICMs isolated from more advanced blastocysts no longer retain totipotency, failing to form TE and generating PE on their surface. We demonstrated that the transition from full potency to lineage priming is prevented by inhibition of the FGF/MAPK signalling pathway. Moreover, we found that after this first restriction step, ICM cells still retain fate flexibility, manifested by ability to convert their fate into an alternative lineage (PE towards EPI and vice versa), until peri-implantation stage

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalScientific Reports
Early online date9 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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