Current Gastroenterology Reports

, Volume 12, Issue 5, pp 340–348 | Cite as

Intestinal Stem Cells

  • Shahid UmarEmail author


Self-renewal in the intestinal epithelia is fueled by a population of undifferentiated intestinal stem cells (ISCs) that give rise to daughter or progenitor cells, which can subsequently differentiate into the mature cell types required for normal gut function. The cellular signals that regulate self-renewal are poorly understood and the factors that mediate the transition from a stem cell to a progenitor cell in the gut are unknown. Recent studies have suggested that ISCs are located either at the crypt base interspersed between the Paneth cells (eg, Lgr-5+ve cells) or at or near position 4 within the intestinal crypt (eg, DCAMKL-1 or Bmi-1+ve cells). This raises the possibility that distinct stem cell regions exist in the crypts and that ISC’s state of activation will determine how the self-renewal is regulated in the intestinal tract.


Intestinal stem cell (ISC) Self-renewal Transit amplifying (TA) cell Enterocytes Paneth cells Enteroendocrine cells Goblet cells Intestinal crypts Inflammation Radiation 



This work was partially supported by National Institutes of Health Grant R01 CA131413 (to SU) from the NCI.


No potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Digestive DiseasesUniversity of Oklahoma Health Sciences CenterOklahoma CityUSA

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