Use of Stem Cells for Regeneration of the Intervertebral Disc
The ability of a tissue to respond to stress or injury requires the involvement and functions of stem cells resident in tissue-specific microenvironmental niches. Aging has been shown to result in a decrease in stem cell number as well as loss of ability to maintain tissue homeostasis and regenerate lost tissue function. Therefore, it is of critical importance to identify stem/progenitor cell populations in different tissues, determine how these cells function in tissue homeostasis, and ascertain their potential utility in tissue engineering.
KeywordsIntervertebral Disc Nucleus Pulposus Disc Degeneration Annulus Fibrosus Nucleus Pulposus Cell
The authors are grateful to the staff of the Education and Research Support Center, Tokai University. This work was supported in part by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan and a grant from AOSpine International and AO Foundation to D.S.
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