Decoding the Human Epidermal Complexity at Single-Cell Resolution
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EB DAYS 2023
23 Marzo 2023

Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24, 8544.

Decoding the Human Epidermal Complexity at Single-Cell Resolution

Authors: Maria Pia Polito †, Grazia Marini †, Michele Palamenghi and Elena Enzo *
Centre for Regenerative Medicine “Stefano Ferrari”, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia,
41125 Modena, Italy

  • Correspondence:
    † These authors contributed equally to this work.


The epidermis is one of the largest tissues in the human body, serving as a protective barrier.
The basal layer of the epidermis, which consists of epithelial stem cells and transient amplifying
progenitors, represents its proliferative compartment. As keratinocytes migrate from the basal layer to
the skin surface, they exit the cell cycle and initiate terminal differentiation, ultimately generating the
suprabasal epidermal layers. A deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms and pathways
driving keratinocytes’ organization and regeneration is essential for successful therapeutic approaches.
Single-cell techniques are valuable tools for studying molecular heterogeneity. The high-resolution
characterization obtained with these technologies has identified disease-specific drivers and new
therapeutic targets, further promoting the advancement of personalized therapies. This review
summarizes the latest findings on the transcriptomic and epigenetic profiling of human epidermal
cells, analyzed from human biopsy or after in vitro cultivation, focusing on physiological, wound
healing, and inflammatory skin conditions.


human keratinocyte; stem cell; single-cell analysis; skin; inflammatory disease; wound healing