Salivary gland stem cells: Can they restore radiation-induced salivary gland dysfunction?]

HNO. 2010 Jun;58(6):556-63
Authors: Rotter N, Schwarz S, Jakob M, Brandau S, Wollenberg B, Lang S
Adult stem cells are actively investigated in the fields of regenerative medicine and tissue engineering, as they exhibit specific characteristics that make them promising candidates for cellular therapies. Depending on their tissue of origin these characteristics include long-term proliferation and the capacity to differentiate into various cell types. To date adult stem cells have been isolated from a multitude of tissues. Non-embryogenic adult tissues contain only small numbers of such stem cells and the derivation of such tissues can cause comorbidities. Therefore, there is ongoing interest in the identification and characterisation of novel cell sources for stem cell isolation and characterisation.Recently, salivary gland tissue has also been explored as a possible source of stem cells, first in animals and later in humans. Such salivary gland-derived stem cells might be useful in the treatment of radiation-induced salivary gland hypofunction, and possibly also in other diseases with loss of acinar cells, such as sequelae of radio iodine treatment or Sjögren’s disease.In this paper we review the current status of salivary gland stem cell biology and application and discuss the possible role of stem cells in the development of novel therapies for salivary gland dysfunctions such as postradiogenic xerostomia.
PMID: 20464362 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]