Rethinking differentiation: stem cells, regeneration and plasticity
Sánchez Alvarado A, Yamanaka S
Cell differentiation is an essential process for the development, growth, reproduction and longevity of all multicellular organisms, and its regulation has been the focus of intense investigation for the past 4 decades. The study of natural and induced stem cells has ushered an age of re-examination of what it means to be a stem or a differentiated cell. Past and recent discoveries in plants and animals, as well as novel experimental manipulations are beginning to erode many of these established concepts, and are forcing a re-evaluation of the experimental systems and paradigms presently being used to explore these and other biological process.