Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Sick kids researchers unmask the potential of stem cells found in adult skin

02.11.2004


Therapies for spinal cord injury may result



Researchers at The Hospital for Sick Children (Sick Kids) have shown that stem cells found in adult skin retain their embryonic capability of making many types of cells. This discovery affirms the potential that stem cells derived from this non-controversial source possess for the development of possible therapies for spinal cord injury and nervous system disorders. This research is reported in the November issue of the scientific journal Nature. "We think these stem cells are actually embryonic cells that go out into the skin during development and then stay in reservoirs in hair follicles," said Dr. Freda Miller, the study’s principal investigator, a senior scientist in Development Biology in the Sick Kids Research Institute and a professor of Molecular and Medical Genetics, and Physiology at the University of Toronto.

"These stem cells are similar to a type of embryonic stem cell called a neural crest stem cell, and like neural crest stem cells, are endogenous and multipotent in nature. These neural crest stem cells generate the peripheral nervous system, and we are therefore now confident that we can make neural and other types of cells from the stem cells found in adult skin," added Dr. Miller, also Canada Research Chair in Developmental Neurobiology.


The research team can now predict what type of cells can be made from these stem cells (called skin-derived precursors, or SKPs) based on the role played by neural-crest stem cells during embryogenesis. In addition to generating the peripheral nervous system, neural crest stem cells generate other tissues such as bone, cartilage, some types of muscle, and even part of the heart. This research was conducted in mice, with similar findings made recently by Dr. Miller’s group in the human cells.

"The cells that Dr. Miller’s group has found in the skin have huge potential to treat brain disorders because they are capable of transforming into neurons normally only found in the brain and other nervous tissue. This new research provides an explanation for the cells’ ability to make neurons and further enhances our understanding of a potentially valuable cell type for stem cell therapy," said Dr. Ron Worton, scientific director of Canada’s Stem Cell Network. "The Stem Cell Network is pleased to have supported this work in Dr. Miller’s laboratory."

The co-lead authors of the paper were Dr. Karl Fernandes, a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Miller’s lab who holds a Canadian Institutes of Health Research/Canadian Neurotrauma Research Program fellowship, and Ian McKenzie, a graduate student in Dr. Miller’s lab from McGill University. Other members of the research team included Pleasantine Mill, Kristen Smith, Mahnaz Akhavan, Fanie Barnabé-Heider, Jeff Biernaskie, Nao Kobayashi, Jean Toma, Dr. David Kaplan and Dr. Chi-Chung Hui, all from Sick Kids, Dr. Victor Rafuse and Adrienne Junek from Dalhousie University, and Dr. Patricia Labosky from the University of Pennsylvania.

Laura Greer | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.utoronto.ca

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Decoding the genome's cryptic language
27.02.2017 | University of California - San Diego

nachricht New risk factors for anxiety disorders
24.02.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Safe glide at total engine failure with ELA-inside

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded after a glide flight with an Airbus A320 in ditching on the Hudson River. All 155 people on board were saved.

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded...

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New pop-up strategy inspired by cuts, not folds

27.02.2017 | Materials Sciences

Sandia uses confined nanoparticles to improve hydrogen storage materials performance

27.02.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

Decoding the genome's cryptic language

27.02.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>