Epidermal stem cells are retained in vivo throughout skin aging

Adam Giangreco, Mei Qin, John E Pintar, Fiona M Watt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

162 Citations (Scopus)


In healthy individuals, skin integrity is maintained by epidermal stem cells which self-renew and generate daughter cells that undergo terminal differentiation. It is currently unknown whether epidermal stem cells influence or are affected by skin aging. We therefore compared young and aged skin stem cell abundance, organization, and proliferation. We discovered that despite age-associated differences in epidermal proliferation, dermal thickness, follicle patterning, and immune cell abundance, epidermal stem cells were maintained at normal levels throughout life. These findings, coupled with observed dermal gene expression changes, suggest that epidermal stem cells themselves are intrinsically aging resistant and that local environmental or systemic factors modulate skin aging.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)250-9
Number of pages10
JournalAging Cell
Issue number2
Publication statusPrint publication - Mar 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Age Factors
  • Animals
  • Causality
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Dermis/anatomy & histology
  • Epidermal Cells
  • Epithelial Cells/cytology
  • Hair Follicle/physiology
  • Keratins/analysis
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Skin Aging/physiology
  • Stem Cells/cytology


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