It seems like the field of cell biology has mixed feelings about fibroblasts so I’m going to start off there with the recommended reads.
But first, check out our stem cell YouTube channel as we are steadily heading toward 500 subscribers and 30,000 views. Please subscribe. I’ve pasted one of our top videos below, which is a fact-check of stem cell supplements. I also have videos on ES cells, stem cells for COPD, and much more.
Even head transplants.
Okay, on to fibroblasts.
Fibroblasts are multifaceted cells. On the one hand they are structural cells that make up vast arrays of connective tissue throughout almost every tissue in the body. This role may make people think of them like simple legos or something.
However, we know that fibroblasts have many other non-structural roles, some powerful including via the molecules they secrete.
They also are not just generic cells but have a surprising amount of heterogeneity. Even just in the skin, one fibroblast is not necessarily like the others.
- Sphingolipids control dermal fibroblast heterogeneity, Science. Fibroblasts are often confused with stem cells and vice versa. More specifically fibroblasts are often confused with mesenchymal stem/stromal cells or MSCs. Some stromal cells are likely fibroblasts but what most people think of as MSCs are not fibroblasts or at least shouldn’t be. Even so, many patients are probably getting injected with “MSCs” that are really mostly fibroblasts even though they aren’t portrayed that way.
- DestVI identifies continuums of cell types in spatial transcriptomics data, Nat. Biotech.
- Retinal organoids derived from rhesus macaque iPSCs undergo accelerated differentiation compared to human stem cells, Cell Prolif. Great work from my colleagues here at UC Davis.
- Synthetic antibody–immune cell complex dramatically shrinks blood tumors. “Small clinical trial suggests new, simple twist on cell therapies for cancer”, Science.
- Mapping human haematopoietic stem cells from haemogenic endothelium to birth, Nature. From a team led by the wonderful Hanna Mikkola.
- Quiescent cancer cells resist T cell attack by forming an immunosuppressive niche, Cell. Cancer stem cell-like cells not only often survive treatments but also can suppress the immune system attack on residual tumor cells like themselves.
- Functional Recovery from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Dopamine Neuron Grafts is Dependent on Neurite Outgrowth, Preprint. At some point I believe Parkinson’s will be treated or maybe even cured by stem cell-based transplants. It’s really a question of when and the specifics of the methods.
- Analysis of sub-kilobase chromatin topology reveals nano-scale regulatory interactions with variable dependence on cohesin and CTCF, Nat Comm.