DNA Repair

Costs of moving stem cells

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Science  14 May 2021:
Vol. 372, Issue 6543, pp. 699-700
DOI: 10.1126/science.372.6543.699-b

Adult stem cells travel long distances to a wound to repair the damaged tissue. The potential cost of migration has been revealed in in vitro studies of cancer cell lines, dendritic cells, and primary stem cells. If these cells have to squeeze into wounds, then this constriction may cause DNA damage. Sahu et al. show that adult stem cells in Schmidtea mediterranea, a highly regenerative planarian flatworm, accumulate DNA damage as they migrate. The flatworm's stem cells actively repair the migration-inflicted DNA damage en route. The authors propose that during migration, the stem cells go through a “migration-damage-repair-migration” cycle as they home into a wound.

eLife 10, e63779 (2021).

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