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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013, Article ID 531579, 7 pages
Review Article

Does the Adult Human Ciliary Body Epithelium Contain “True” Retinal Stem Cells?

1Department of Ophthalmology, Oslo University Hospital, Pb 4950 Nydalen, 0407 Oslo, Norway
2Department of Ophthalmology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Szeged, Korányi fasor 10-11, Szeged 6720, Hungary
3Stem Cells and Eye Research Laboratory, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical and Health Science Center and Apoptosis and Genomics Research Group of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, University of Debrecen, Nagyerdei krt. 98, Debrecen 4032, Hungary

Received 3 July 2013; Revised 26 August 2013; Accepted 31 August 2013

Academic Editor: Daniel Petrovič

Copyright © 2013 Rebecca Frøen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Recent reports of retinal stem cells being present in several locations of the adult eye have sparked great hopes that they may be used to treat the millions of people worldwide who suffer from blindness as a result of retinal disease or injury. A population of proliferative cells derived from the ciliary body epithelium (CE) has been considered one of the prime stem cell candidates, and as such they have received much attention in recent years. However, the true nature of these cells in the adult human eye has still not been fully elucidated, and the stem cell claim has become increasingly controversial in light of new and conflicting reports. In this paper, we will try to answer the question of whether the available evidence is strong enough for the research community to conclude that the adult human CE indeed harbors stem cells.