Aging; stem cells; telomerase; telomeres
Stem cell research holds a promise to treat and prevent age-related degenerative changes in humans. Literature is replete with studies showing that stem cell function declines with aging, especially in highly proliferative tissues/organs. Among others, telomerase and telomere damage is one of the intrinsic physical instigators that drive agerelated degenerative changes. In this review we provide brief overview of telomerase-deficient aging affects in diverse stem cells populations. Furthermore, potential disease phenotypes associated with telomerase dysregulation in a specific stem cell population is also discussed in this review. Additionally, the role of telomerase in stem cell driven cancer is also briefly touched upon.