Kobielak and his team used a system to make all of the sweat gland cells in a mouse easy to spot: labeling them with green fluorescent protein (GFP), which is visible under ultraviolet light.
Staining of slow-cycling sweat gland cells (green) with the protein laminin (red) and the fluorescent stain DAPI (blue) (Image by Yvonne Leung)
Over time, the GFP became dimmer as it was diluted among dividing sweat gland cells. After four weeks, the only cells that remained fluorescent were the ones that did not divide or divided very slowly — a known property among stem cells of certain tissues, including the hair follicle and cornea. Therefore, these slow-dividing, fluorescent cells in the sweat gland’s coiled lower region were likely also stem cells.
Then, the first author of this paper, graduate student Yvonne Leung, tested whether these fluorescent cells could do what stem cells do best — differentiate into multiple cell types. To the researchers’ surprise, these glowing cells generated not only sweat glands, but also hair follicles when placed in the skin of a mouse without GFP.
The researchers also determined that under certain conditions, the sweat gland stem cells could heal skin wounds and regenerate all layers of the epidermis.
“That was a big surprise for us that those very quiescent sweat gland stem cells maintain multilineage plasticity — participating not only in their own regeneration, but also in the regeneration of hair follicles and skin after injury,” said Kobielak, assistant professor of pathology at the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at USC.
This offers exciting possibilities for developing future stem cell-based treatments for skin and sweat gland-related conditions, such as hyperhidrosis or hypohidrosis (excessive or insufficient sweating). It could also lay the foundation for creating fully functional skin — containing both sweat glands and hair follicles — for burn victims.
Additional co-authors on the study were Eve Kandyba, Yi-Bu Chen and Seth Ruffins from the Broad Center.
The study was supported by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health (grant numbers R03-AR061028 and R01-AR061552).
Marie Rippen | EurekAlert!
Hunting pathogens at full force
22.03.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung
A 155 carat diamond with 92 mm diameter
22.03.2017 | Universität Augsburg
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
22.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
22.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
22.03.2017 | Materials Sciences