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Trends Cell Biol. 2005 Dec;15(12):666-73. Epub 2005 Oct 21.

Stem cells in postnatal myogenesis: molecular mechanisms of satellite cell quiescence, activation and replenishment.

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  • 1Center for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Uppal Road, Hyderabad-500007, India.


Satellite cells are the primary stem cells in adult skeletal muscle, and are responsible for postnatal muscle growth, hypertrophy and regeneration. In mature muscle, most satellite cells are in a quiescent state, but they activate and begin proliferating in response to extrinsic signals. Following activation, a subset of satellite cell progeny returns to the quiescent state during the process of self-renewal. Here, we review recent studies of satellite cell biology and focus on the key transitions from the quiescent state to the state of proliferative activation and myogenic lineage progression and back to the quiescent state. The molecular mechanisms of these transitions are considered in the context of the biology of the satellite cell niche, changes with age, and interactions with established pathways of myogenic commitment and differentiation.

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