Identification of Human Retinal Stem-Like Cells for Retina Regeneration

Published: 24 October 2023| Version 3 | DOI: 10.17632/s9wbscpsrs.3
Hui Liu, Yunlong Ma, Na Gao, Yijun Zhou, Gen Li, Qunyan Zhu, Xiaoyu Liu, Shasha Li, Cheng Chen, Yuhe Yang, Qing Ren, Huijuan Hu, Yaoyao Cai, Ming Chen, yuanchao xue, Kang Zhang, Jia Qu, Jianzhong Su


Human retinal stem cells hold great promise in regenerative medicine, yet their existence and characteristics remain ambiguous. Combining single-cell multi-omics and organoid technologies, we isolate a unique cell subpopulation, named human neural retinal stem-like cells (hNRSCs), from fetal retinas and human retinal organoids (hROs). The hNRSCs reside in the peripheral retina and non-pigmented ciliary marginal zone, exhibiting substantial self-renewal and differentiation potential in vitro. Like retina-derived hNRSCs, single-cell and spatial transcriptome analysis showed that the hROs-derived hNRSCs also promote hROs regeneration into all precursor and mature retinal cells. Furthermore, transplantation of hRO-derived hNRSCs into retinal degeneration mice can repair retinas and improve visual function. Our work identifies and characterizes a new stem cell population with great therapeutic potential for treating retinal damage and regeneration.



Cell Regeneration