alexa Cutaneous mesenchymal stem cells: Status of current knowledge, implications for dermatopathology
Dermatology

Dermatology

Hair Therapy & Transplantation

Author(s): Klaus Sellheyer

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Stem cell biology is currently making its impact on medicine, which will probably increase over the next decades. It not only influences our therapeutic thinking caused by the enormous plasticity of stem cells but also affects diagnostic and conceptual aspects of dermatopathology. Although our knowledge of the keratinocytic stem cells located within the follicular bulge has exploded exponentially since their discovery in 1990, the concept of cutaneous mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) is new. Described initially in 2001 in mice, MSCs later were also found in the human dermis. The connective tissue sheath and the papilla of the hair follicle probably represent the anatomical niche for cutaneous MSCs. In line with the cancer stem cell hypothesis, mutations of these cells may be the underlying basis of mesenchymal skin neoplasms, such as dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans. Furthermore, research on cutaneous MSCs may impact our thinking on the interaction of the epithelial component of skin neoplasms with their surrounding stroma. We are only in the early stages to recognize the importance of the potential contributions of cutaneous MSC research to dermatopathology, but it is not inconceivable to assume that they could be tremendous, paralleling the early discovery of the follicular bulge as a stem cell niche.

This article was published in Journal of Cutaneous Pathology and referenced in Hair Therapy & Transplantation

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