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ID 20607
file
creator
subject
telomere
telomerase
stem cell
cancer stem cell
dyskeratosis congenita
NDC
Botany
abstract
Telomeres, guanine-rich tandem DNA repeats of the chromosomal end, provide chromosomal stability, and cellular replication causes their loss. In somatic cells, the activity of telomerase, a reverse transcriptase that can elongate telomeric repeats, is usually diminished after birth so that the telomere length is gradually shortened with cell divisions, and triggers cellular senescence. In embryonic stem cells, telomerase is activated and maintains telomere length and cellular immortality; however, the level of telomerase activity is low or absent in the majority of stem cells regardless of their proliferative capacity. Thus, even in stem cells, except for embryonal stem cells and cancer stem cells, telomere shortening occurs during replicative aging, possibly at a slower rate than that in normal somatic cells. Recently, the importance of telomere maintenance in human stem cells has been highlighted by studies on dyskeratosis congenital, which is a genetic disorder in the human telomerase component. The regulation of telomere length and telomerase activity is a complex and dynamic process that is tightly linked to cell cycle regulation in human stem cells. Here we review the role of telomeres and telomerase in the function and capacity of the human stem cells.
journal title
British Journal of Cancer
volume
Volume 96
issue
Issue 7
start page
1020
end page
1024
date of issued
2007
publisher
Nature Publishing Group
issn
0007-0920
ncid
publisher doi
pubmed id
language
eng
nii type
Journal Article
HU type
Journal Articles
DCMI type
text
format
application/pdf
text version
author
rights
Copyright (c) 2007 Cancer Research UK
relation url
department
Research Institute for Radiation Biology and Medicine
Natural Science Center for Basic Research and Development