Image reproduced from Taoudi et al. (2005). Development132, 4179–4191.

Image reproduced from Taoudi et al. (2005). Development132, 4179–4191.

Cancer and leukemia patients can benefit from hematopoietic stem cell transplants to replace damaged or diseased bone marrow. One key determinant of a successful transplant is the correct localization of stem cells following transfusion into the patient. Thus, a major area of investigation is aimed at improving the honing and engraftment of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) into the bone marrow. A recent study by Adams et al. uses knockout mice to demonstrate that G protein-mediated signaling facilitates cell engraftment into bone marrow. HSPCs from mice lacking Gαs do not localize or engraft in bone marrow. Alternatively, pharmacological enhancement of Gαs activation improves HSPC loalization, suggesting that activation of this pathway has the potential to improve transplantation efficiency in the clinic.

Adams
G.B.
,
Alley
I.R.
,
Chung
U.I.
,
Chabner
K.T.
,
Jeanson
N.T.
,
Celso
C.L.
,
Marsters
E.S.
,
Chen
M.
,
Weinstein
L.S.
,
Lin
C.P.
, et al. 
. (
2009
).
Haematopoietic stem cells depend on Gα(s)-mediated signalling to engraft bone marrow
.
Nature
Mar 25 [Epub ahead of print] [doi:10.1038/nature07859].