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      No place like home: anatomy and function of the stem cell niche.

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          Abstract

          Stem cells are rare cells that are uniquely capable of both reproducing themselves (self-renewing) and generating the differentiated cell types that are needed to carry out specialized functions in the body. Stem cell behaviour, in particular the balance between self-renewal and differentiation, is ultimately controlled by the integration of intrinsic factors with extrinsic cues supplied by the surrounding microenvironment, known as the stem cell niche. The identification and characterization of niches within tissues has revealed an intriguing conservation of many components, although the mechanisms that regulate how niches are established, maintained and modified to support specific tissue stem cell functions are just beginning to be uncovered.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol
          Nature reviews. Molecular cell biology
          Springer Science and Business Media LLC
          1471-0080
          1471-0072
          Jan 2008
          : 9
          : 1
          Affiliations
          [1 ] Laboratory of Genetics, The Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA. ljones@salk.edu
          Article
          nrm2319
          10.1038/nrm2319
          18097443
          17d5318d-ae3e-435f-ad60-f10981537178

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