About this Research Topic
Regenerative medicine has the ambition to cure failing organs by replacing lost tissue with a new, functional one, that has the same characteristics as the original one. In an ambitious way, it aims at recapitulating processes that are present in nature, as in urodeles amphibians, but have been lost during evolution. In its most successful examples, stem cell transplantation has been successfully employed to regenerate the entire hematopoietic system, burned skin, and corneal epithelium. A similar approach has been attempted since the early 2000’s to regenerate myocardium lost after an ischemic attack. Results were initially taken with enthusiasm by the scientific community. However, later on it was apparent that the poor graft survival, and the defective differentiation and integration of donated cells into the host myocardium limited the ability of donated cells to regenerate lost tissue. Nonetheless, stem cell therapy proved to be able to positively interfere with cardiac remodeling with unexpected and, as yet, partially understood mechanisms. The difficulties found in translating exciting findings obtained in small animal models into larger, clinically relevant ones can be attributed, at least in part, to the use of in vitro and in vivo models, that are ineffective in providing novel insights into the process of tissue regeneration.
Therefore, the aim of this Research topic will be to collect contributions on in vitro and in vivo models that investigate crucial actors of the reparative and regenerative process, with the final intent of improving the translation of biological findings to the clinical arena. Specifically, we aim to cover topics related - but not limited - to:
• Standardization of methods for stem cell isolation;
• Mechanobiology impact on stem cell function;
• Impact that organoid and 3D culture of stem cells exert on their function;
• Use of CRISR/Cas9 system to create in vitro models of disease (potential and limits);
• Cardiac optogenetics;
• In vivo imaging of cardiac regeneration;
• Animal models for cardiac regeneration;
• Gene and epigene therapy for cardiac regeneration; and
• Cell tracking methods for cardiac regeneration.
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.