Niche for Normal and Cancer Stem Cells
An important issue in cancer therapy is the presence of a population that is resistant to anticancer treatment. This resistance has been partly ascribed to the presence of quiescent stem cells in a cancer population. However, how the quiescent state is induced in a proliferating cancer population is totally obscure. We think that our study on the stem cell system of pigment cells will provide some insight into the molecular basis for cancer stem cells, because the quiescent melanocyte stem cell would be the ideal model for understanding the process generating quiescent stem cells. In this article, we review our latest understanding of the quiescent stem cells of the melanocyte lineage by referring to some related topics of cancer stem cells.
KeywordsCancer Stem Cell Hair Follicle Notch Signaling Pathway Normal Stem Cell Hair Cycle
Many colleagues in our laboratory have contributed to the study described here. In particular, the contributions of three graduate students, Rasmus Freter, Saori Yonetani, and Gyohei Egawa, and a technical staff member, Mariko Moriyama, are gratefully acknowledged. This study is supported by the Leading Project for Realization of Regenerative Medicine.