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Curr Stem Cell Res Ther. 2019;14(8):654-668. doi: 10.2174/1574888X14666190906163253.

Stem Cell Senescence: the Obstacle of the Treatment of Degenerative Disk Disease.

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Key Laboratory of Biorheological Science and Technology, Ministry of Education, College of Bioengineering Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044, China.


Intervertebral disc (IVD) has a pivotal role in the maintenance of flexible motion. IVD degeneration is one of the primary causes of low back pain and disability, which seriously influences patients' health, and increases the family and social economic burden. Recently, stem cell therapy has been proven to be more effective on IVD degeneration disease. However, stem cell senescence is the limiting factor in the IVD degeneration treatment. Senescent stem cells have a negative effect on the self-repair on IVD degeneration. In this review, we delineate that the factors such as telomerase shortening, DNA damage, oxidative stress, microenvironment and exosomes will induce stem cell aging. Recent studies tried to delay the aging of stem cells by regulating the expression of aging-related genes and proteins, changing the activity of telomerase, improving the survival microenvironment of stem cells and drug treatment. Understanding the mechanism of stem cell aging and exploring new approaches to delay or reverse stem cell aging asks for research on the repair of the degenerated disc.


Stem cell; adhesion makers; intervertebral disc degeneration; menopause; neurogenesis; senescence.

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