Very long-term self-renewal of small intestine, colon, and hair follicles from cycling Lgr5+ve stem cells

N. Barker, J. H. Van Es, V. Jaks, M. Kasper, H. Snippert, R. Toftgård, H. Clevers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

102 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The intestinal epithelium and the hair follicle represent examples of rapidly self-renewing tissue in adult mammals. We have recently identified a novel stem cell gene Lgr5 expressed in multiple adult tissues. At the bottoms of crypts in small intestine and colon as well as in hair follicles, Lgr5 marks cycling cells with stem cell properties (Barker et al. 2007; Jaks et al. 2008). Using an inducible Lgr5-Cre knockin allele in conjunction with the Rosa26-LacZ Cre reporter strain, long-term lineage-tracing experiments were performed in adult mice. The Lgr5+ve crypt-based cell generated all epithelial lineages during a 14-month period, implying that it represents the stem cell of the small intestine and colon. Similarly, lineage tracing during a 14-month period revealed that Lgr5+ve cells located in the bulge of the hair follicle sustained multiple rounds of hair growth. These observations support the counterintuitive notion that Lgr5+ve cells are actively cycling, yet represent long-term stem cells of these adult, self-renewing tissues.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)351-356
Number of pages6
JournalCold Spring Harbor Symposia on Quantitative Biology
Volume73
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

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