Regulation of human lung alveolar multipotent cells by a novel p38α MAPK/miR-17-92 axis

The cellular and molecular mechanisms that control lung homeostasis and regeneration are still poorly understood. We have identified and isolated a new population of E-Cad/Lgr6+ putative lung stem cells. These cells can be indefinitely expanded from human lungs, harbouring both, self-renewal capacity and the potency to differentiate in vitro and in vivo.  In addition, a signalling network involving the p38 pathway, the activation of p53 and the regulation of the miR-17-92 cluster has been identified. We have provided new cellular and molecular components of lung homeostasis and regeneration. Disruption of the proper regulation of this signalling axis might be involved in the promotion of human lung diseases, including lung cancer.

Authors: Oeztuerk-Winder F, Guinot A, Ochalek A, Ventura JJ

Publication Details: EMBO J. 2012 Jul 24. doi: 10.1038/emboj.2012.192

Regeneration of bleomycin-injured human lung tissue by human lung stem cells (green)

Regeneration of bleomycin-injured human lung tissue by human lung stem cells (green). (Credit: Dr JJ Ventura)

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