Initiators: Claudia Waskow (Jena) and Timm Schroeder (Basel)
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are the source of continuous regeneration of mature blood cell types in adults through the generation of progeny harboring the same or reduced developmental potential. Their amazing regenerative capacity is disclosed during recovery from hematopoietic stress and after transplantation into conditioned or non-conditioned recipients where they contribute for the remaining life-time to blood cell formation. Owing to this feature HSCs are clinically used for the curative treatment of many hematological diseases including gene therapeutic approaches. However, low numbers of donor cells is often an invincible obstacle for successful bone marrow transplantation, and mechanisms controlling HSC function are for this reason under intense investigation. Acquiring knowledge on the incorporation of distinct mechanisms controlling cell fate choices during hematopoiesis may be the first step for future successful expansion or modulation of HSCs and improved generation of specific mature cell types, a technology that would be greatly beneficial for clinical HSC transplantation.
Aim of this working group is to unite researchers and clinicians sharing the interest in unraveling mechanisms controlling HSC function and hematopoiesis and to translate new findings into novel therapeutic strategies for the treatment of hematologic disorders. To this end, this working group focuses on researchers interested in the following questions
- What keeps a stem cell a stem cell?
- What determines lineage choice during hematopoiesis?
- How is symmetric versus asymmetric cell division controlled?
- What are the regulatory circuits controlling those mechanisms including genetic and epigenetic regulators?
- Cell-extrinsic versus cell-intrinsic control mechanisms?
- How does aberrant hematopoiesis occur?
(This question is also of outstanding interest and will be worked on together with experts in the working group ‘Stem cells in diseases’)
The GSCN working group on ‘Basic, translational, and applied hematopoiesis’ was approved by the board of the GSCN during the second meeting of GSCN in Heidelberg in November 2014, and should serve as a platform to integrate technical and intellectual advances in this field ranging from basic science to clinical application. The working group strongly encourages scientists and clinicians to join-in and to support the formation of a strong network on the regulation of hematopoiesis and hematopoietic stem cells.
We plan to establish a data-base for interested scientists as a contact platform for colleagues, media and funding agencies, to offer work shops and satellite meetings on specific topics and organize outreach events. Please contact the administrative office and/or the initiators if you want to join-in. We will be grateful for your initiative and suggestions.