Clonal, in vivo behavior of the totipotent hematopoietic stem cell

I. R. Lemischka

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44 Scopus citations


Classical and more recent studies have provided a description of the in vivo behavior of the totipotent hematopoietic stem cell and its clonal progeny. These reconstitution experiments, employing clonotypic markers have shown that single or few engrafted lymphoid-myeloid stem cells are both necessary and sufficient for long-term, stable hematopoiesis in a reconstituted mouse. This underscores the remarkable developmental capacity of individual stem cell clones. Furthermore, the long-term and retransplantation studies have provided an indication of stem cell self-renewal ability. Taken together, the long-term analyses have also shed light on the dynamic behavior of engrafted stem cell clones and of the entire reconstituted hematopoietic system. A model is presented where the developmental and proliferative behavior of totipotent stem cells is a function of time. In this model commitment versus self-renewal decisions may be governed by stochastic mechanisms. However, the actual contribution by stem cells to particular mature cell populations may be more a function of lineage specific demands as they change over post-engraftment time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)349-355
Number of pages7
JournalSeminars in Immunology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • Clonal markers
  • Hematopoietic reconstitution
  • Totipotent hematopoietic stem cells


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