Cellular Mechanisms and Regulation of Quiescence

Dev Cell. 2020 Nov 9;55(3):259-271. doi: 10.1016/j.devcel.2020.09.029.


Quiescence is a state of reversible proliferative arrest in which cells are not actively dividing and yet retain the capacity to reenter the cell cycle upon receiving an appropriate stimulus. Quiescent cells are remarkably diverse-they reside in different locations throughout the body, serve distinct roles, and are activated by a variety of signals. Despite this diversity, all quiescent cells must be able to persist in a nondividing state without compromising their proliferative potential, which requires changes to core cellular programs. How drastically different cell types are able to implement extensive changes to their gene-expression programs, metabolism, and cellular structures to induce a common cellular state is a fascinating question in cell and developmental biology. In this review, we explore the diversity of quiescent cells and highlight the unifying characteristics that define the quiescent state.

Keywords: aging; cancer; cell cycle; gene expression; proliferation; quiescence; senescence; signaling; stem cell; terminal differentiation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Cycle* / genetics
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cells / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Signal Transduction
  • Transcription, Genetic