Signal propagation in stem-cell niches
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2009

Stem cells, maintaining tissue homeostasis, are nurtured in microscopic niches formed of so-called environmental cells. The kinetics of proliferation and differentiation of stem cells in such niches depend on their interaction with the messenger proteins secreted by environmental cells. We propose a generic mean-field kinetic model of the propagation of such signals. To motivate our study, we briefly describe a stem-cell niche in the Drosophila ovary. Our model is however applicable to other niches as well. In particular, it helps one to understand the necessary conditions for the niche function. For example, the model predicts that in the case of the Drosophila ovary each germline stem cell should have in the external membrane at least 700 receptors interacting with the signaling Dpp and Gpp proteins emanating from the cap cells.

Signaling proteins


Protein degradation

Environmental cells

Stem-cell proliferation and differentiation

Protein diffusion

Drosophila ovary

Reaction-diffusion kinetic equations


Vladimir Zhdanov

Chalmers, Teknisk fysik, Kemisk fysik

Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications

0378-4371 (ISSN)

Vol. 388 3791-3797


Atom- och molekylfysik och optik