Forsyth Institute scientists have discovered an important mechanism for controlling the behavior of adult stem cells.
Research with the flatworm, planaria, found a novel role for the proteins involved in cell-to-cell communication. This work has the potential to help scientists understand the nature of the messages that control stem cell regulation ¯ such as the message that maintain and tells a stem cell to specialize and to become part of an organ e.g.: liver or skin.
In recent years, planarians have been recognized as a great model system to molecularly dissect conserved stem cell regulatory mechanisms in vivo. Planarians have powerful regeneration capability that makes them ideal for studying this process. The Forsyth team uses planarians and other animal models to study development and regeneration.
The Forsyth team will publish this research in the August 16 issue of Development. According to the paper’s lead author, Néstor J. Oviedo, a postdoctoral fellow in the Forsyth Center for Regenerative and Developmental Biology, this work, highlighting the importance of direct cell-cell transfer of small molecules between stem cells and their neighbors, provides an important roadmap for learning about regeneration. “These findings suggest that similar mechanisms may be extraordinarily relevant for controlling the behavior of migratory, plastic cells. Further analysis in both planarians and in vertebrates will provide crucial opportunities for understanding what drives stem cell behavior and may help medical science identify novel therapeutic targets.”
The Forsyth team previously found that communication through gap-junctions (microscopic tunnels directly linking neighboring cells) controls the left-right asymmetric positioning of the internal organs during embryonic development. In this study, they turned to the role of gap junctional signals as regulators of adult stem cells in repair of injury.
Drs. Oviedo and Levin focused on direct cell-cell transfer of small molecules and ions as crucial signals that determine behavior of adult stem cells in vivo. They showed that when one of many specific gap junction channel types was abolished, the adult stem cell pool disappeared along with the regenerative capabilities, suggesting that gap junction-permeable signals are necessary to maintain stem cell state and tissue regeneration. This research demonstrates a novel role for gap-junction proteins and suggest gap junction-mediated signaling as a new and tractable control point for adult, somatic cell regulation
Most recent work in the stem cell field has focused on the secreted protein factors that control embryonic stem cell differentiation. However, no specific gap junction protein had been functionally linked to adult/somatic stem cell behavior in vivo or to organ regeneration. This work demonstrates that gap junction channels providing direct cell-to-cell communication are a critical component for development and normal physiology.
Jennifer Kelly | EurekAlert!
Show me your leaves - Health check for urban trees
12.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.
Liver Cancer: Lipid Synthesis Promotes Tumor Formation
12.12.2017 | Universität Basel
MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.
Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...
Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...
Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.
To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...
The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...
With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong
Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
07.12.2017 | Event News
12.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
12.12.2017 | Earth Sciences
12.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering