PW1 gene/paternally expressed gene 3 (PW1/Peg3) identifies multiple adult stem and progenitor cell populations

Vanessa Besson, Piera Smeriglio, Amélie Wegener, Frédéric Relaix, Brahim Nait Oumesmar, David A. Sassoon, Giovanna Marazzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


A variety of markers are invaluable for identifying and purifying stem/progenitor cells. Here we report the generation of a murine reporter line driven by Pw1 that reveals cycling and quiescent progenitor/ stemcells in all adult tissues thus far examined, including the intestine, blood, testis, central nervous system, bone, skeletal muscle, and skin. Neurospheres generated from the adult PW1-reporter mouse shownear 100%reporter-gene expression following a single passage. Furthermore, epidermal stem cells can be purified solely on the basis of reporter-gene expression. These cells are clonogenic, repopulate the epidermal stem-cell niches, and give rise to new hair follicles. Finally, we demonstrate that only PW1 reporter-expressing epidermal cells give rise to follicles that are capable of self-renewal following injury. Our data demonstrate that PW1 serves as an invaluable marker for competent self-renewing stem cells in a wide array of adult tissues, and the PW1-reporter mouse serves as a tool for rapid stem cell isolation and characterization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11470-11475
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number28
StatePublished - 12 Jul 2011
Externally publishedYes


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