Haematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) can self-renew and differentiate in any blood cell type throughout life and thereby sustain the entire blood system. To do so, HSPCs had been shown to seed, in a multi-step process, intermediate haematopoietic niches before colonizing the adult marrow. While HSPC birth had been thoroughly characterized in the past, both in mammals and in zebrafish, how perivascular niches could host HSPCs and sustain their expansion was poorly understood. In an article published in the last issue of Cell, Tamplin et al. (1) elegantly exploited the many advantages provided by the zebrafish embryo to describe how endothelium remodeling in the perivascular niche, referred to as "cuddling," favors HSPCs colonization and expansion.
Keywords: blood; bone marrow; extravasation; haematopoietic stem cell; vascular niche.