Haematopoiesis (formation of blood cells)
Blood Cells

Author: Gianpiero Pescarmona
Date: 10/01/2019


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One of the key players in self-renewal and development of haematopoietic cells is stem cell factor (SCF), which binds to the c-kit receptor on the HSC. Absence of SCF is lethal. There are other important glycoprotein growth factors which regulate the proliferation and maturation, such as interleukins IL-2, IL-3, IL-6, IL-7. Other factors, termed colony-stimulating factors (CSFs), specifically stimulate the production of committed cells. Three CSFs are granulocyte-macrophage CSF (*GM-CSF*), granulocyte CSF (*G-CSF*) and macrophage CSF (*M-CSF*). These stimulate granulocyte formation and are active on either progenitor cells or end product cells.

Erythropoietin is required for a myeloid progenitor cell to become an erythrocyte. On the other hand, thrombopoietin makes myeloid progenitor cells differentiate to megakaryocytes (thrombocyte-forming cells). The diagram to the right provides examples of cytokines and the differentiated blood cells they give rise to.

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