Hair is a mini-organ in which dermal papilla (DP) cells play important roles in hair follicle morphogenesis and formation via interactions with epithelial cells. DP cells have previously been difficult to analyze because of the lack of a specific surface marker. We have demonstrated that prominin-1/CD133 (CD133) is a useful marker for murine DP cells. DP cells express CD133 during the early anagen stage (active growth phase) not only during hair morphogenesis, but also during the growth phase of hairs after birth. Gene expression and flow cytometric analysis revealed that CD133-positive (+) cells in the skin possess the characteristics of DP cells. The CD133(+) cells isolated from embryonic or adult skin-induced new hair follicles in vivo when they were transplanted into nude mice mixed with embryonic epithelial cells, but CD133-negative (-) cells could not. We propose that the CD133 is a novel surface marker useful for collecting DP cells in the anagen stage and for analyzing the function of DP.