Arabinosylcytosine induces fetal hemoglobin in baboons by perturbing erythroid cell differentiation kinetics

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Science  11 May 1984:
Vol. 224, Issue 4649, pp. 617-619
DOI: 10.1126/science.6200940


Arabinosylcytosine, a compound that inhibits DNA synthesis in rapidly dividing cells, stimulates fetal hemoglobin in adult baboons and produces significant perturbations in the pools of erythroid progenitors. It appears that changes in the kinetics of erythroid cell differentiation rather than direct action on the gamma genes underlie stimulation of fetal hemoglobin in the adult animals in vivo. These results also suggest that chemotherapeutic agents selected for their low carcinogenic or mutagenic potential could be used for therapeutic induction of fetal hemoglobin in patients with sickle cell anemia.