DROSOPHILA: LOCAL SIGNALS CONTROL STEM CELL RENEWAL
Previously, the Matunis lab has shown that damaging the Drosophila testis causes differentiating germ cells to revert to germline stem cells to repair the tissue. We also found that the hub can transdifferentiate into new somatic stem cells upon damage. We have identified key signals that regulate the balance of stem cell identity, including the activation of Jak-Stat through the secretion of the ligand, Unpaired, by hub cells.
The Matunis lab continues to investigate molecular determinants for stem cell fate and function, including the roles of EGFR signaling.