Wounds in fetal skin heal without scar, however the mechanism is unknown. We identified a novel group of E-cadherin positive cells in the blood of fetal and adult mice and named them "Dot cells". The percentage of Dot cells in E16.5 fetal mice blood is more than twenty times higher compared to adult blood. Dot cells also express integrin beta1, CD184, CD34, CD13low and Sca1low, but not CD45, CD44, and CD117. Dot cells have a tiny dot shape between 1 and 7 microm diameters with fast proliferation in vitro. Most of the Dot cells remain positive for E-cadherin and integrin beta1 after one month in culture. Transplantation of Dot cells to adult mice heals skin wounds with less scar due to reduced smooth muscle actin and collagen expression in the repair tissue. Tracking GFP-positive Dot cells demonstrates that Dot cells migrate to wounds and differentiate into dermal cells, which also express strongly to FGF-2, and later lose their GFP expression. Our results indicate that Dot cells are a group of previously unidentified cells that have strong wound healing effect. The mechanism of scarless wound healing in fetal skin is due to the presence of a large number of Dot cells.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.yexcr.2008.01.022
View details for Web of Science ID 000254798600010
View details for PubMedID 18295204
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2692606