One of the major areas of interest in our lab is to understand how adult stem cells develop and how they contribute to organ renewal. The maintenance, repair and growth of many adult organs, such as the bone marrow, skin, brain, and gastrointestinal tract, depend on tissue-specific populations of stem cells. We use the rodent incisor as a model system to understand adult stem cells. Unlike human teeth, the rodent incisor grows continuously throughout the life of the animal. We are working to decipher the molecular processes that regulate the behavior of these stem cells, including their capacity to self-renew as well as to differentiate into the various cellular components of the tooth. We also study the stem cells that fuel regeneration of the intestine, bone and other organs.