May 19, 2012

Molecular signatures of the three stem cell lineages in hydra and the emergence of stem cell function at the base of multicellularity

Molecular Biology and Evolution
Georg HemmrichThomas C G Bosch


How distinct stem cell populations originate and whether there is a clear stem cell "genetic signature" remain poorly understood. Understanding the evolution of stem cells requires molecular profiling of stem cells in an animal at a basal phylogenetic position. In this study, using transgenic Hydra polyps, we reveal for each of the three stem cell populations a specific signature set of transcriptions factors and of genes playing key roles in cell type-specific function and interlineage communication. Our data show that principal functions of stem cell genes, such as maintenance of stemness and control of stem cell self-renewal and differentiation, arose very early in metazoan evolution. They are corroborating the view that stem cell types shared common, multifunctional ancestors, which achieved complexity through a stepwise segregation of function in daughter cells.

  • References65
  • Citations58


  • References65
  • Citations58


Mentioned in this Paper

Hydra Polyps
Transcription, Genetic
Molecular Profiling
Cell Differentiation Process
Cell Lineage
Staining and Labeling
Cell Type
Colony-forming Unit
Transcription Factor

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