Stem Cell Reviews and Reports

, Volume 13, Issue 5, pp 567–574 | Cite as

Lung as a Niche for Hematopoietic Progenitors

  • Isabella Borges
  • Isadora Sena
  • Patrick Azevedo
  • Julia Andreotti
  • Viviani Almeida
  • Ana Paiva
  • Gabryella Santos
  • Daniel Guerra
  • Pedro Prazeres
  • Luiza Lousado Mesquita
  • Luanny Souto de Barros Silva
  • Caroline Leonel
  • Akiva Mintz
  • Alexander Birbrair


Platelets are released from megakaryocytes. The bone marrow has been proposed to be the major site where this process occurs. Lefrançais et al. (2017) using state-of-the-art techniques including two-photon microscopy, in vivo lineage-tracing technologies, and sophisticated lung transplants reveal that the lung is also a primary site for platelet biogenesis. Strikingly, lung megakaryocytes can completely reconstitute platelet counts in the blood in mice with thrombocytopenia. This study also shows that hematopoietic progenitors, with capacity to repopulate the bone marrow after irradiation, are present in the lungs. This work brings a novel unexpected role for the lung as a niche for hematopoiesis. The emerging knowledge from this research may be important for the treatment of several disorders.


Lung Hematopoietic stem cells Origin Niche 



Alexander Birbrair is supported by a grant from Pró-reitoria de Pesquisa/Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (PRPq/UFMG) (Edital 05/2016); Akiva Mintz is supported by the National Institute of Health (1R01CA179072-01A1) and by the American Cancer Society Mentored Research Scholar grant (124443-MRSG-13-121-01-CDD). We thank Rosa Maria Esteves Arantes for her useful comments.

Compliance with Ethical Standards


The authors indicate no potential conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Isabella Borges
    • 1
  • Isadora Sena
    • 1
  • Patrick Azevedo
    • 1
  • Julia Andreotti
    • 1
  • Viviani Almeida
    • 1
  • Ana Paiva
    • 1
  • Gabryella Santos
    • 1
  • Daniel Guerra
    • 1
  • Pedro Prazeres
    • 1
  • Luiza Lousado Mesquita
    • 1
  • Luanny Souto de Barros Silva
    • 1
  • Caroline Leonel
    • 1
  • Akiva Mintz
    • 2
  • Alexander Birbrair
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of PathologyFederal University of Minas GeraisBelo HorizonteBrazil
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyWake Forest School of MedicineWinston-SalemUSA
  3. 3.Department of Cell BiologyAlbert Einstein College of MedicineBronxUSA
  4. 4.Albert Einstein College of MedicineRuth L. and David S. Gottesman Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine ResearchBronxUSA

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