Laboratory for Cellular Reprogramming
All organisms possess instincts to survive exposure to external stresses by adapting to their environment and, to some degree, regenerating injured tissues or organs. It is thus unsurprising to observe dramatic cellular plasticity after exposure to significant external stresses, such as an injury. In both vertebrates and plants, cellular reprogramming can be induced by exposure to external stimuli, which suggests that organisms that possess significant capacity for regeneration show great plasticity when exposed to external stresses and generate “stem cells” from somatic cells. Given these observations, true ‘stemness’ appears to be linked to cellular plasticity. The main goal of our research is to elucidate the relationship between stemness and cellular plasticity.