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Stemness in the Neural Crest

The neural crest, a remarkable embryonic stem cell population, contributes to the generation of a wide variety of derivatives, including neurons, glia, cartilage, bone, pigment cells, and endocrine cells. As the list of derivatives has expanded since the identification of the neural crest over 150 years ago, the neural crest's clinical significance has become more evident. Furthermore, central questions regarding stemness formation and maintenance remain poorly understood. Now, in a new Concise Review from STEM CELLS, researchers led by Surangi N. Perera and Laura Kerosuo (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, USA) discuss those studies related to how this post‐gastrulation cell population maintains its stem cell potential from embryonic to adult stages.