Stage specific embryonic antigen 3

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Stage-specific embryonic antigen 3 (SSEA-3) is a glycosphingolipid, specifically, an oligosaccharide composed of five carbohydrate units connected to a sphingolipid. Sphingolipids were originally discovered in 1884 by Johann Ludwig Wilhelm Thudichum who named them after the Sphinx of Greek mythology in reference to the unresolved riddle of their function.[1] It is now known that sphingolipids function as key players in cell signaling [2] and the SSEA-3 molecule as a whole plays a key role in identifying many types of mammalian cells with pluripotent and stem cell-like characteristics.[3][4]


  1. ^ Thudichum, John Louis William (1884). A Treatise on the Chemical Constitution of Brain. London: Bailliere, Tindall, and Cox. OCLC 253038666.
  2. ^ Futerman, AH; Hannun, YA (2004). "The complex life of simple sphingolipids". EMBO Reports. 5 (8): 777–782. doi:10.1038/sj.embor.7400208. PMC 1299119. PMID 15289826.
  3. ^ Kuroda, Yasumasa; Kitada, Masaaki; Wakao, Shohei; Nishikawa, Kouki; Tanimura, Yukihiro; Makinoshima, Hideki; Goda, Makoto; Akashi, Hideo; Inutsuka, Ayumu (2010-05-11). "Unique multipotent cells in adult human mesenchymal cell populations". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 107 (19): 8639–8643. doi:10.1073/pnas.0911647107. ISSN 1091-6490. PMC 2889306. PMID 20421459.
  4. ^ Byrne, James (2011-07-01). "A mini-review on stage-specific embryonic antigen 3 (SSEA-3)". eJournal of Cellular Biotechnology. 1:eP3.