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Scientific result | Highlight | News | Stem cells
In a study published in
Nature Biomedical Engineering, a team from the Genomics and Radiobiology of Keratinopoiesis laboratory (LGRK/ IRCM) has shown that a transcription factor, KLF4, plays a key role in the proliferation of the stem cells in the epidermis. The discovery brings new therapeutic perspectives to regenerative medicine.
human epidermis renews itself entirely every month thanks to the stem cells
located in its deepest, "basal" layer, but the genes and mechanisms
involved in that process remain largely unknown. However, researchers from LGRK
(IRCM/François Jacob Institute of Biology), in partnership with AFM-Téléthon
and the University of Évry, have shed light on the role a transcription factor,
KLF4, plays in the control of skin stem cells.
results hold promise in the setting of cutaneous regenerative medicine,
particularly for the bioengineering of skin grafts for tissue reconstruction.
Clinically, the discovery may bring new procedures for severe burns, chronic
ulcers or breast reconstructions, for example.
The massive culturing of patient-derived
epidermal cells (keratinocytes) is mandatory for the production of skin grafts,
but the procedure may result in a loss of stem cell function and resultantly a
loss of regenerative capacity. The LGRK team showed that downregulating the
gene responsible for KLF4 favored the rapid expansion of functional skin stem
cells without altering their genetic stability. The keratinocytes expanded in
this manner showed greater regenerative capacity in in vitro skin
reconstruction models and in in vivo grafts. KLF4 thus appears to be a
new molecular target able to bring improvements to skin graft bioengineering.
These results have been shared through a press release.
KLF4 inhibition promotes expansion of adult human epidermal precursors and embryonic stem-cell-derived keratinocytes | Nature Biomedical Engineering
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