Regeneration, stem cells, and aging in the tunicate Ciona : insights from the oral siphon
Jeffery, William R.
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KeywordCiona intestinalis; Oral siphon; Regeneration; Adult stem cells; Progenitor cells; Branchial sac; Blastema; Aging
Regeneration studies in the tunicate Ciona intestinalis have recently been focused on the potential of adult stem cells to replace injured tissues and organs during the adult life cycle using the oral siphon (OS) as a model. The OS has oral siphon pigment organs (OPO) along its rim and an underlying network of muscle fibers in its tube. Different regeneration processes are triggered by OS amputation at the tip, along the tube, or at the base. One process involves the replacement of OPO without new cell division by direct differentiation of locally deployed stem cells or stem cells that migrate from the branchial sac. Another process involves blastema formation by the migration of progenitor cells produced from branchial sac stem cells. The capacity for complete and accurate OS regeneration declines continuously during the adult life cycle. Finally, after an age threshold is reached, OS regeneration ceases in old animals. The loss of regeneration capacity in old animals involves the depletion of stem cells in the branchial sac, the inability of brachial sac progenitor cells to migrate to the sites of regeneration, and defective OPO replacement. The significance of the OS model for studying regeneration, stem cells, and aging will be enhanced by the application of molecular methods.
Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2015. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Elsevier for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in International Review of Cell and Molecular Biology 319 (2015): 255-282, doi:10.1016/bs.ircmb.2015.06.005.
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