Multipotent Nestin-Positive Stem Cells Reside in the Stroma of Human Eccrine and Apocrine Sweat Glands and Can Be Propagated Robustly In Vitro

Sabine Nagel, Franziska Rohr, Caroline Weber, Janina Kier, Frank Siemers, Charli Kruse, Sandra Danner, Matthias Brandenburger*, Anna Emilia Matthiessen

*Corresponding author for this work
14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Human skin harbours multiple different stem cell populations. In contrast to the relatively well-characterized niches of epidermal and hair follicle stem cells, the localization and niches of stem cells in other human skin compartments are as yet insufficiently investigated. Previously, we had shown in a pilot study that human sweat gland stroma contains Nestin-positive stem cells. Isolated sweat gland stroma-derived stem cells (SGSCs) proliferated in vitro and expressed Nestin in 80% of the cells. In this study, we were able to determine the precise localization of Nestin-positive cells in both eccrine and apocrine sweat glands of human axillary skin. We established a reproducible isolation procedure and characterized the spontaneous, long-lasting multipotent differentiation capacity of SGSCs. Thereby, a pronounced ectodermal differentiation was observed. Moreover, the secretion of prominent cytokines demonstrated the immunological potential of SGSCs. The comparison to human adult epidermal stem cells (EpiSCs) and bone marrow stem cells (BMSCs) revealed differences in protein expression and differentiation capacity. Furthermore, we found a coexpression of the stem cell markers Nestin and Iα6 within SGSCs and human sweat gland stroma. In conclusion the initial results of the pilot study were confirmed, indicating that human sweat glands are a new source of unique stem cells with multilineage differentiation potential, high proliferation capacity and remarkable self renewal. With regard to the easy accessibility of skin tissue biopsies, an autologous application of SGSCs in clinical therapies appears promising.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere78365
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume8
Issue number10
ISSN1553-7390
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24.10.2013

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