Advances in Regenerative Medicine Image

Skeletal stem cells regress when tasked with extensive regeneration

Adult mouse skeletal stem cells in the jaw revert to a more developmentally flexible state when called upon to regenerate large portions of bone and tissue, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

The finding is the first to show that mammalian adult stem cells can march backward along the developmental timeline in a process called de-differentiation to become more primitive in response to environmental signals. In particular, the cells appeared to regress to a cell type that normally occurs within weeks of conception in humans and that gives rise to the bones, cartilage and connective tissue of the head and face.

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