Regenerating Salamanders and Their Blastemas

Progress in understanding the mechanisms by which salamaders regenerate lost limbs from The Scientist: "The cells responsible for the salamander's famed ability to regenerate amputated limbs aren't pluripotent, as scientists have thought ... They're retaining their memory of the tissues they came from, and they go on to form cells of that same type. That's not what most people thought was going on ... That's good news for regenerative medicine: If the mechanism salamander cells use for regrowing body parts doesn't depend on pluripotent stem cells, it may be easier than researchers have assumed to mimic that organism's regenerative strategy in potential therapies. ... Salamanders' regenerative abilities were thought to rely on the dedifferentiation of cells near the damaged limb to a pluripotent state -- a feat that mammalian cells are normally incapable of. ... Instead of trying to generate multipotent or pluripotent cells, [researchers] should try to understand how these cells get the appropriate signals to make a new limb in terms of organizing the different tissue types."

Link: http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/55809/

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