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How blood stem cells take root in the body

A see-through zebrafish and enhanced imaging provide the first direct glimpse of how blood take root in the body to generate blood. Reporting online in the journal Cell, researchers in ’s Hospital’s describe a surprisingly dynamic system that offers several clues for improving in patients with cancer, severe immune deficiencies and , and for helping those transplants “take.”

A look at Blood Stem Cell Development in Zebrafish
This image captures a blood stem cell en route to taking root in a zebrafish.

Credit:Boston Children’s Hospital


The study was funded by the , the National Institutes of Health (grants R01 HL04880, 5P30 DK49216, 5R01 DK53298, 5U01 HL10001-05, R24 DK092760 and R01 HL091724), the American Society of Hematology, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

Ellen Durand, PhD, in the Zon Laboratory was co-first author on the study. Additional authors were Logan Carr, Elliott Hagedorn, PhD, and Pulin Lee, PhD, of Boston Children’s; Sarah Childs, PhD, of the University of Calgary; and Amanda Yzaguirre and Nancy Speck, PhD, of the University of Pennsylvania.

Boston Children’s Hospital