Int J Biol Sci 2019; 15(7):1368-1382. doi:10.7150/ijbs.33233 This issue

Research Paper

Exosomal Micro RNAs Derived from Dermal Papilla Cells Mediate Hair Follicle Stem Cell Proliferation and Differentiation

Hailong Yan1,2, Ye Gao1,3, Qiang Ding1, Jiao Liu1, Yan Li1, Miaohan Jin1, Han Xu1, Sen Ma1, Xiaolong Wang1, Wenxian Zeng1✉, Yulin Chen1✉

1. Key Laboratory of Animal Genetics, Breeding and Reproduction of Shaanxi Province, College of Animal Science and Technology, Northwest A&F University, Yangling, China
2. Life Science Research Center, Yulin University, Yulin, China
3. School of Medicine, Shanxi Datong University, Datong, China

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Yan H, Gao Y, Ding Q, Liu J, Li Y, Jin M, Xu H, Ma S, Wang X, Zeng W, Chen Y. Exosomal Micro RNAs Derived from Dermal Papilla Cells Mediate Hair Follicle Stem Cell Proliferation and Differentiation. Int J Biol Sci 2019; 15(7):1368-1382. doi:10.7150/ijbs.33233. Available from

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Graphic abstract

Recent studies have demonstrated that dermal papilla cell-derived exosomes (DPC-Exos) promote the anagen stage of hair follicle (HF) growth and delay the catagen stage. However, the roles of DPC-Exos in regulating hair follicle stem cell (HFSC) quiescence and activation remain unknown. Here, we found that HFSC differentiation was induced by co-culture with DPCs, and that DPC-Exos attached to the surface of HFSCs. Using micro RNA (miRNA) high-throughput sequencing, we identified 111 miRNAs that were significantly differentially expressed between DPC-Exos and DPCs, and the predicted target genes of the top 34 differentially expressed miRNAs indicated that DPC-Exos regulate HFSCs proliferation and differentiation via genes involved in cellular signal transduction, fatty acid expression regulation, and cellular communication. The overexpression of miR-22-5p indicated that it negatively regulates HFSC proliferation and LEF1 was revealed as the direct target gene of miR-22-5p. We therefore propose the miR-22-5p-LEF1 axis as a novel pathway regulating HFSC proliferation.

Keywords: exosome, hair follicle stem cells, dermal papilla, proliferation