Over time, stem cells in damage-repairing muscle tissues struggle to regenerate. In a new study, scientists have identified a process by which the older muscle stem cell populations can be rejuvenated to function like younger cells. Using 2-year-old mice, they found that many muscle stem cells isolated exhibited elevated levels of activity in a biological cascade called the p38 MAP kinase pathway. The scientists were able to identify a defect inherent to old muscle stem cells and a way to overcome the defect. This finding may have implications in the area of therapeutic care for the elderly. Read more in Nature Medicine.
JD Bernet et al. Nature Medicine, 2014. DOI: 10.1038/nm.3465