GUEST: Prof Fiona Watts FRS FMedSci, Director, Centre for Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine. Guy's Hospital King's College London :- ‘Signals that control exit from the stem cell compartment in human epidermis’


Stem cell behaviour is controlled by intrinsic mechanisms and by external signals from the local microenvironment or niche. Using cultures of human epidermal stem cells, my lab is investigating the interplay between specific intrinsic and extrinsic signals in regulating stem cell fate. We have been able to define soluble factors, cell surface ligands and extracellular matrix components that control exit from the stem cell compartment.