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Stem Cells and Tissue Homeostasis

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Maintenance of adult tissues is carried out by stem cells and is sustained throughout life in a highly ordered manner. Homeostasis within the stem cell compartment is governed by positive and negative feedback regulation of instructive extrinsic and intrinsic signals. Stem cells respond to these signals by generating progeny to maintain the steady state of the tissue and carry out tissue repair following injury. Too much or too little proliferation within the stem cell compartment will have devastating consequences for long-term tissue maintenance. We have identified a marker of somatic stem cells in various epithelial tissues such as the epidermis. Using mouse models in combination with in vitro cells culture techniques we demonstrate that the protein is required for homeostasis via regulation of growth factor responsiveness in the stem cell compartment. This has implications on the role of growth factor signalling and negative feedback regulation in tissue development, maintenance and progression of malignant disease.

This talk is part of the Foster Talks series.

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