Fibro-adipogenic progenitor cells (FAPs) and muscle stem cells (MuSCs) play critical roles in muscle repair and regeneration. Successful isolation of these cells is important to studying their biological functions. Moreover, low yields of FAPs and MuSCs have hindered efforts to understand their biological functions and downstream applications. Using fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), this study describes a new method for simultaneous isolation and culture of pure and viable populations of FAPs and MuSCs derived from mouse muscles. 

What is exciting about this article?

Sources of muscle stem cells are limited and growing these cells in the lab is currently an inefficient and challenging process. This article describes a new method for the simultaneous isolation of FAPs and MuSCs from adult mice. This method may help overcome the challenges to understanding the biological roles of these cells in muscle regeneration. When applied to human samples, this protocol may aid stem cell therapy for regenerating muscle tissue to treat individuals with muscle injury and debilitating muscular dystrophies.

How does this fit into the larger NIAMS portfolio?

NIAMS supports research in muscle biology and investigating the causes, treatment, and prevention of musculoskeletal diseases.This article describes a method to isolate and culture MuSCs and FAPs, making them suitable for biological studies and downstream applications. This will help scientists to better understand the role of these two populations in the regeneration of the skeletal muscle in physiological and pathological conditions.

Grant support


Research Areas:

Cell Biology Developmental Biology Muscle Biology Stem Cell Biology

CORE Facilities:


FACS-isolation and Culture of Fibro-Adipogenic Progenitors and Muscle Stem Cells from Unperturbed and Injured Mouse Skeletal Muscle.

Riparini G, Simone JM, Sartorelli V
J Vis Exp.
2022 Jun 8;
doi: 10.3791/63983
PMID: 35758697

Research reported in this publication was supported by the Intramural Research Program of the NIHʼs National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.