Schwann cells (SCs) play a crucial role in successful nerve repair and regeneration in both the peripheral and central nervous systems and promise to be a useful tool for cell-based therapies, disease modelling and drug discovery. Therefore, establishment of a procedure to obtain activated, highly proliferative SCs, in an appropriate time for clinical applications, is a prerequisite. However, the sources of SCs are limited both for studies of SC development and biology and for the development of treatments for SC-associated diseases. It is previously showed that epidermal neural crest stem cells (EPI-NCSCs) are a biologically relevant source for generating large and highly pure populations of SCs. Insulin is a peptide growth factor that regulates the transport, synthesis and storage of substances required for growth and differentiation of various kinds of developing cells. Regarding to the role of insulin in myelinating SC differentiation, in present study, we aim to examine the impact of insulin, on the cell viability and SC differentiation of EPI-NCSCs, isolated from bulge of rat hair follicles, through MTT and real-time quantitative PCR analysis, respectively.
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