Review

Coexistence of Quiescent and Active Adult Stem Cells in Mammals

Science  29 Jan 2010:
Vol. 327, Issue 5965, pp. 542-545
DOI: 10.1126/science.1180794

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Abstract

Adult stem cells are crucial for physiological tissue renewal and regeneration after injury. Prevailing models assume the existence of a single quiescent population of stem cells residing in a specialized niche of a given tissue. Emerging evidence indicates that both quiescent (out of cell cycle and in a lower metabolic state) and active (in cell cycle and not able to retain DNA labels) stem cell subpopulations may coexist in several tissues, in separate yet adjoining locations. Here, we summarize these findings and propose that quiescent and active stem cell populations have separate but cooperative functional roles.

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