Tackling blood stem cell heterogeneity

Apr 26, 2010

Distinct populations of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) that preferentially generate specific types of blood cells can be identified based on abundance of a single surface protein, according to a study published online on April 26 in the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

The concept that HSCs, which give rise to all types of blood cells, are heterogeneous is not new, but distinguishing distinct types of HSCs from one another has proven challenging. Hiromitsu Nakauchi and colleagues set out to find a way to identify and study different HSC populations.

The team found that HSC populations expressing high, medium, and low amounts of the surface protein CD150 exhibited different propensities to generate specific blood cell types. And some of those expressing the highest levels of CD150 exhibited an unusually 'latent' or 'delayed' ability to generate new blood .

By refining our understanding of the complexity of HSCs, these findings may be useful in studies aimed at determining which HSC populations are affected in particular blood cell diseases.

Explore further: Smartphone experiment tracks whether our life story is written in our gut bacteria

More information: Morita, Y., H. Ema, and H. Nakauchi. 2010. J. Exp. Med. doi:10.1084/jem.20091318

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Researchers Unlock Molecular Origin of Blood Stem Cells

Jan 09, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- A research team led by Nancy Speck, PhD, Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, has identified the location and developmental timeline ...

Protein key to control, growth of blood cells

Aug 13, 2008

New research sheds light on the biological events by which stem cells in the bone marrow develop into the broad variety of cells that circulate in the blood. The findings may help improve the success of bone marrow transplants ...

Recommended for you

Monitoring the rise and fall of the microbiome

7 hours ago

Trillions of bacteria live in each person's digestive tract. Scientists believe that some of these bacteria help digest food and stave off harmful infections, but their role in human health is not well understood.

Antioxidant biomaterial promotes healing

14 hours ago

When a foreign material like a medical device or surgical implant is put inside the human body, the body always responds. According to Northwestern University's Guillermo Ameer, most of the time, that response can be negative ...

Immune response may cause harm in brain injuries, disorders

16 hours ago

Could the body's own immune system play a role in memory impairment and cognitive dysfunction associated with conditions like chronic epilepsy, Alzheimer's dementia and concussions? Cleveland Clinic researchers believe so, ...

User comments : 0