The post-natal heart contains a myocardial stem cell population

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The recent identification of stem cell pools in a variety of unexpected tissue sources has raised the possibility that a pluripotent stem cell population may reside in the myocardium and contribute to the post-natal growth of this tissue. Here, we demonstrate that the post-natal myocardium contains a resident verapamil-sensitive side population (SP), with stem cell-like activity. When growth of the post-natal heart was attenuated through over-expression of a dominant negative cardiac transcription factor (MEF2C), the resident SP cell population was subject to activation, followed by a consequent depletion. In addition, cardiac SP cells are capable of fusion with other cell types, but do not adopt the corresponding gene expression profile. These observations suggest that a responsive stem cell pool resides in the adult myocardium, and may influence adaptation of the post-natal heart. © 2002 Published by Elsevier Science B.V. on behalf of the Federation of European Biochemical Societies.




Hierlihy, A. M., Seale, P., Lobe, C. G., Rudnicki, M. A., & Megeney, L. A. (2002). The post-natal heart contains a myocardial stem cell population. FEBS Letters, 530(1–3), 239–243.

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