The goal of Wilson's laboratory is to identify and characterize normal prostate epithelial stem cells to determine whether they are targets of malignant transformation, and to define their relationship to prostate cancer stem cells. Wilson has identified prostate stem cells in the proximal region of murine prostatic ducts and isolated them based on their high expression of the Sca-1 antigen. They found that high levels of active TGF-beta in the proximal region maintain stem cell dormancy. An understanding of the biology of prostate stem cells will yield new insights into the initiation and maintenance of prostate cancer and pave the way to a better understanding of the etiology of prostate carcinoma and benign prostatic hypertrophy, as both diseases are considered to arise from the aberrant proliferation of stem cells.
Ontiveros CS, Salm SN, Wilson EL. Axin2 expression identifies progenitor cells in the murine prostate. Prostate. 2008 Sep 1;68(12):1263-72.
Bates M, Kovalenko B, Wilson EL, Moscatelli D. Endothelial cells support the growth of prostate tissue in vivo. Prostate. 2008 Jun 1;68(8):893-901.
Goto K, Salm SN, Coetzee S, Xiong X, Burger PE, Shapiro E, Lepor H, Moscatelli D, Wilson EL. Proximal prostatic stem cells are programmed to regenerate a proximal-distal ductal axis. Stem Cells. 2006 Aug;24(8):1859-68. Epub 2006 Apr 27.