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Describing Bone-forming Perivascular Cells

Perivascular cells are a heterogeneous population of mesenchymal progenitors. The outermost layer of the vessel wall forms a niche with a high density and diversity of progenitors, which are also called adventitial cells. Several antigens, including CD10, CD107, CD140a, and aldehyde dehydrogenase activity, have been identified in adventitial cells showing distinct differentiation potentials, which has implications for bone repair. In particular, adipose tissue holds great promise for bone tissue engineering due to its high content of mesenchymal progenitors, including bone-forming subsets. Now, a new STEM CELLS article from the lab of Aaron W. James (Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA) highlights the most relevant basic and translational research of perivascular cell biology with a focus on bone regeneration.