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Article first published online: 28 JAN 2011
Copyright © 2010 AlphaMed Press
Volume 29, Issue 1, pages 57–66, January 2011
How to Cite
Meyer-Blazejewska, E. A., Call, M. K., Yamanaka, O., Liu, H., Schlötzer-Schrehardt, U., Kruse, F. E. and Kao, W. W. (2011), From Hair to Cornea: Toward the Therapeutic Use of Hair Follicle-Derived Stem Cells in the Treatment of Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency. STEM CELLS, 29: 57–66. doi: 10.1002/stem.550
Author contributions: E.A.M.-B.: conception and design, collection and/or assembly of data, data analysis and interpretation, manuscript writing, final approval of the manuscript; M.K.C.: conception and design, collection and/or assembly of data, data analysis and interpretation, manuscript writing, final approval of the manuscript; O.Y.: collection and/or assembly of data; H.L.: collection and/or assembly of data; U.S.-S.: final approval of the manuscript; F.E.K.: final approval of the manuscript; W.W.K.: conception and design, data analysis and interpretation, final approval of the manuscript. E.A.M.-B. and M.K.C. contributed equally to this article.
First published online in STEM CELLS EXPRESS October 19, 2010.
Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest is found at the end of this article.
- Issue published online: 28 JAN 2011
- Article first published online: 28 JAN 2011
- Accepted manuscript online: 18 OCT 2010 01:53PM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 3 OCT 2010
- Manuscript Received: 12 AUG 2010
- Adult stem cells;
- Stem cell transplantation;
- In vivo tracking;
- Stem cell plasticity;
- Stem cell-microenvironment interactions;
- Transgenic mouse
Limbal stem cell deficiency (LSCD) leads to severe ocular surface abnormalities that can result in the loss of vision. The most successful therapy currently being used is transplantation of limbal epithelial cell sheets cultivated from a limbal biopsy obtained from the patient's healthy, contralateral eye or cadaveric tissue. In this study, we investigated the therapeutic potential of murine vibrissae hair follicle bulge-derived stem cells (HFSCs) as an autologous stem cell (SC) source for ocular surface reconstruction in patients bilaterally affected by LSCD. This study is an expansion of our previously published work showing transdifferentiation of HFSCs into cells of a corneal epithelial phenotype in an in vitro system. In this study, we used a transgenic mouse model, K12rtTA/rtTA/tetO-cre/ROSAmTmG, which allows for HFSCs to change color, from red to green, once differentiation to corneal epithelial cells occurs and Krt12, the corneal epithelial-specific differentiation marker, is expressed. HFSCs were isolated from transgenic mice, amplified by clonal expansion on a 3T3 feeder layer, and transplanted on a fibrin carrier to the eye of LSCD wild-type mice (n = 31). The HFSC transplant was able to reconstruct the ocular surface in 80% of the transplanted animals; differentiating into cells with a corneal epithelial phenotype, expressing Krt12, and repopulating the corneal SC pool while suppressing vascularization and conjunctival ingrowth. These data highlight the therapeutic properties of using HFSC to treat LSCD in a mouse model while demonstrating a strong translational potential and points to the niche as a key factor for determining stem cell differentiation. STEM CELLS 2011;29:57–66