Adult Stem Cells and Skeletal Muscle Regeneration
Satellite cells are unipotent stem cells involved in muscle regeneration. However, the skeletal
muscle microenvironment exerts a dominant influence over stem cell function. The cell intrinsic complexity
of the skeletal muscle niche located within the connective tissue between fibers includes motor
neurons, tendons, blood vessels, immune response mediators and interstitial cells. All these cell types
modulate the trafficking of stimuli responsible of muscle fiber regeneration. In addition, several stem cell types have been
discovered in skeletal muscle tissue, mainly located in the interstitium. The majority of these stem cells appears to directly
contribute to myogenic differentiation, although some of them are mainly implicated in paracrine effects. This review focuses
on adult stem cells, which have been used for therapeutic purposes, mainly in animal models of chronic muscle degeneration.
Emerging literature identifies other myogenic progenitors generated from pluripotent stem cells as potential
candidates for the treatment of skeletal muscle degeneration. However, adult stem cells still represent the gold standard for
future comparative studies.
Keywords: Adult stem cells, Muscular dystrophy, Skeletal muscle regeneration.
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