Stem cells are found in almost all organisms from the early stages of development to the end of life. There are several types of stem cells and all of them may prove useful for medical research; however, each of the different types has both promise and limitations. Somatic Stem Cells: Methods and Protocols presents selected genetic, molecular, and cellular techniques used in somatic stem cell research and its clinical application. Chapters focus on the isolation, characterization, purity, plasticity, and clinical uses of somatic stem cells from a variety of human and animal tissues. Written in the highly successful Methods in Molecular Biology™ series format, chapters include introductions to their respective topics, lists of the necessary materials and reagents, step-by-step, readily reproducible laboratory protocols, and key tips on troubleshooting and avoiding known pitfalls. Through and intuitive, Somatic Stem Cells: Methods and Protocols seeks to provides scientists with the fundamental techniques of stem cell research and its potential application in regenerative medicine.