Age-associated inflammation inhibits epidermal stem cell function

Jason Doles, Mekayla Storer, Luca Cozzuto, Guglielmo Roma, William M. Keyes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


Altered stem cell homeostasis is linked to organismal aging. However, the mechanisms involved remain poorly understood. Here we report novel alterations in hair follicle stem cells during skin aging, including increased numbers, decreased function, and an inability to tolerate stress. Performing high-throughput RNA sequencing on aging stem cells, cytokine arrays, and functional assays, we identify an age-associated imbalance in epidermal Jak-Stat signaling that inhibits stem cell function. Collectively, this study reveals a role for the aging epidermis in the disruption of cytokine and stem cell homeostasis, suggesting that stem cell decline during aging may be part of broader tumor-suppressive mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2144-2153
Number of pages10
JournalGenes and Development
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 1 2012


  • Aging
  • Epidermis
  • Jak-Stat
  • Stem cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology


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