Evolution of the clonogenic potential of human epidermal stem/progenitor cells with age
Olivia Zobiri, Nathalie Deshayes, Michelle Rathman-Josserand
Department of Biological Research, L'Oréal Advanced Research, Clichy Cedex, France
Abstract: A number of clinical observations have indicated that the regenerative potential and overall function of the epidermis is modified with age. The epidermis becomes thinner, repairs itself less efficiently after wounding, and presents modified barrier function recovery. In addition, the dermal papillae flatten out with increasing age, suggesting a modification in the interaction between epidermal and dermal compartments. As the epidermal regenerative capacity is dependent upon stem and progenitor cell function, it is naturally of interest to identify and understand age-related changes in these particular keratinocyte populations. Previous studies have indicated that the number of stem cells does not decrease with age in mouse models but little solid evidence is currently available concerning human skin. The objective of this study was to evaluate the clonogenic potential of keratinocyte populations isolated from the epidermis of over 50 human donors ranging from 18 to 71 years old. The data indicate that the number of epidermal cells presenting high regenerative potential does not dramatically decline with age in human skin. The authors believe that changes in the microenvironment controlling epidermal basal cell activity are more likely to explain the differences in epidermal function observed with increasing age.
Keywords: skin, epidermal stem cells, aging, colony-forming efficiency test
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