Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are the progenitors of all blood and immune cells, yet their role in immunity is not well understood. Most studies have focused on the ability of committed lymphoid and myeloid precursors to replenish immune cells during infection. Recent studies, however, have indicated that HSCs also proliferate in response to systemic infection and replenish effector immune cells. Inflammatory signaling molecules including interferons, tumor necrosis factor-α and Toll-like receptors are essential to the HSC response. Observing the biology of HSCs through the lens of infection and inflammation has led to the discovery of an array of immune-mediators that serve crucial roles in HSC regulation and function.
Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.