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Turning Brain into Blood: A Hematopoietic Fate Adopted by Adult Neural Stem Cells in Vivo

Science  22 Jan 1999:
Vol. 283, Issue 5401, pp. 534-537
DOI: 10.1126/science.283.5401.534

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Abstract

Stem cells are found in various organs where they participate in tissue homeostasis by replacing differentiated cells lost to physiological turnover or injury. An investigation was performed to determine whether stem cells are restricted to produce specific cell types, namely, those from the tissue in which they reside. After transplantation into irradiated hosts, genetically labeled neural stem cells were found to produce a variety of blood cell types including myeloid and lymphoid cells as well as early hematopoietic cells. Thus, neural stem cells appear to have a wider differentiation potential than previously thought.

  • * These authors contributed equally to this work.

  • Present address: University of Washington, Department of Biochemistry, Seattle, WA 98195–7350, USA.

  • To whom correspondence should be addressed at University of Washington, Department of Biochemistry, Seattle, WA 98195–7350, USA, e-mail: adanac{at}u.washington.edu (for C.R.R.B.) and at Istituto Nazionale Neurologico C. Besta, Via Celoria 11, Milan, Italy I-20133, e-mail: vescovi{at}istituto-besta.it (for A.L.V.).

  • § Present address: Walter Eliza Hall Institute, Medical Research, Parkville, Victoria, Australia 3050.

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