"Stemness": transcriptional profiling of embryonic and adult stem cells

Science. 2002 Oct 18;298(5593):597-600. doi: 10.1126/science.1072530. Epub 2002 Sep 12.


The transcriptional profiles of mouse embryonic, neural, and hematopoietic stem cells were compared to define a genetic program for stem cells. A total of 216 genes are enriched in all three types of stem cells, and several of these genes are clustered in the genome. When compared to differentiated cell types, stem cells express a significantly higher number of genes (represented by expressed sequence tags) whose functions are unknown. Embryonic and neural stem cells have many similarities at the transcriptional level. These results provide a foundation for a more detailed understanding of stem cell biology.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / genetics
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Bone Marrow Cells / physiology
  • Cell Differentiation
  • DNA Helicases / genetics
  • DNA Helicases / metabolism
  • Embryo, Mammalian / cytology*
  • Expressed Sequence Tags
  • Gene Expression Profiling*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Gene Expression*
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cells / physiology*
  • Lateral Ventricles / cytology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Neurons / cytology*
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Signal Transduction
  • Stem Cells / physiology*
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters
  • DNA Helicases