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Protein Key to Control Growth of Blood Cells
Date:8/5/2008

tem cells had a higher proportion of quiescent cells, those in a resting stage in the cell cycle. Quiescent stem cells, said Tong, are more likely to succeed in a recipient when they are used in bone marrow transplantation.

Although much research remains to be done, added Tong, other researchers might build on this knowledge to manipulate HSCs for more effective bone marrow transplants for cancer patients after high dose chemotherapy or radiotherapy and treatments for particular blood disorders. Aplastic anemia, severe combined immunodeficiency and hemoglobin disorders, for example, involve deficiencies of specific immune cells in the blood. Using a drug to inhibit Lnk could potentially produce larger numbers of HSCs for a successful bone marrow transplant.

Myeloproliferative disorders (MPDs), on the other hand, entail the opposite danger -- a sometimes-fatal overproduction of certain bone marrow cells. Clinicians might use Tong's research on Lnk and its associated signaling pathway to curtail stem cell production and control MPDs.

The National Cancer Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, supported Tong's research, with additional grant funding from the McCabe Foundation and CHOP Institutional Development Fund. Tong's co-authors were Alexey Bersenev, Chao Wu, and Joanna Balcerek, all of the Division of Hematology at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

About The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia: The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia was founded in 1855 as the nation's first pediatric hospital. Through its long-standing commitment to providing exceptional patient care, training new generations of pediatric healthcare professionals and pioneering major research initiatives, Children's Hospital has fostered many discoveries that have benefited children worldwide. Its pediatric research program is among the largest in the country, ranking third in National Institutes of Health funding. In addition, its unique family-c
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SOURCE The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
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