Reciprocal interaction between hair follicle Stem Cells and surrounding niche during skin and hair regeneration

Project Leader: Krzysztof Kobielak, M.D., Ph.D. Project period: 2018 - 2020
Project funding: TEAM, FNP
Project description:

The behavior of hair follicle stem cells (hfSCs) is tightly governed by an intricate balance of signaling which converge to induce bouts of SC quiescence and activation, resulting in new hair formation. Our long term objective is to understand how this regenerative hair cycling behavior is regulated at the molecular level, and to apply this knowledge toward regenerative medicine. We have shown that inhibition of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling resulted in the precocious activation of quiescent hfSCs. My laboratory discovered a new mechanism of hfSCs regulation where a competitive balance of BMP/WNT signaling occurs intrinsically in the hfSCs. hfSCs with suppressed BMP signaling display profound altered expression in the BMP pathway itself and Wnt pathway. We hypothesize that there is a constant competition between activator and inhibitor activities in hfSC populations and hair dermal papilla (DP) niche micro-environment which is critical for maintenance of hfSC homeostasis.

Laboratory of Stem Cells, Tissue Development and Regeneration