Understanding how blood cells are made
We’ve invented a novel technology to watch the emergence of HSC.
We study blood development. We’re interested in deciphering which signals dictate the production of blood cells. If we can understand how blood stem cells originate and develop, we may be able to create more effective therapies for blood-related diseases.
Through a truly collaborative effort, we devised a new approach to precisely image the anatomical and cellular origin of blood stem cells (hematopoietic stem cells, HSCs). We use time-lapse confocal imaging, together with variations on dissection procedures of non-fixed mouse embryos. This has meant that for the first time we are able to visualize the dynamic emergence of the HSCs from the ventral endothelial floor of the aorta. With this novel technique, we will better understand the mechanisms that govern the generation and expansion of blood stem cells and mature blood.