Theses Doctoral

Characterization of Endogenous Hematopoietic Stem Cells in Their Native Unperturbed State

Upadhaya, Samik K.

Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSCs) are rare, self-renewing, and multipotent cells that sustain lifelong production of blood and immune cells. Much of our understanding of hematopoiesis, including the process of divergence and commitment into specific lineages during differentiation, is derived from the analysis of static composition of HSC and progenitor compartments as well as the measurement of their potential using transplantation-based studies. As such, the dynamics of endogenous HSCs, including the kinetics of their differentiation and their interactions with the bone marrow (BM) niche in real-time is poorly understood. The current study aims to characterize HSCs in their native, unperturbed environment by using inducible lineage tracing in combination with high-dimensional flow cytometry and single cell transcriptomics. Our findings provide an unbiased kinetic roadmap of early steps of hematopoietic differentiation and reveal fundamental differences in the sequence of lineage emergence from HSCs. We found a rapid and preferential emergence of megakaryocytic lineage followed by erythroid and myeloid lineages, whereas a substantial delay in lymphopoiesis at steady state. We also used intravital microscopy to visualize endogenous HSCs in the BM of live animals and discovered them to undergo short-range directional movements with extensive morphological changes. Furthermore, our findings revealed profound changes in HSC behavior following treatment with drugs that are used to induce their mobilization into peripheral blood. Overall, the present study offers novel insights into the fundamental features of endogenous HSC differentiation and their in-vivo dynamics during steady state.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Pathobiology and Molecular Medicine
Thesis Advisors
Reizis, Boris
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
July 19, 2019