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Blood. 2009 Nov 19;114(21):4721-8. doi: 10.1182/blood-2009-04-216390. Epub 2009 Sep 24.

The transcription factors STAT5A/B regulate GM-CSF-mediated granulopoiesis.

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  • 1Laboratory of Genetics and Physiology, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), National Institutes of Health (NIH), Bethesda, MD, USA.


Neutrophils play a vital role in the immune defense, which is evident by the severity of neutropenia causing life-threatening infections. Granulocyte macrophage-colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) controls homeostatic and emergency development of granulocytes. However, little is known about the contribution of the downstream mediating transcription factors signal transducer and activator of transcription 5A and 5B (STAT5A/B). To elucidate the function of this pathway, we generated mice with complete deletion of both Stat5a/b genes in hematopoietic cells. In homeostasis, peripheral neutrophils were markedly decreased in these animals. Moreover, during emergency situations, such as myelosuppression, Stat5a/b-mutant mice failed to produce enhanced levels of neutrophils and were unable to respond to GM-CSF. Both the GM-CSF-permitted survival of mature neutrophils and the generation of granulocytes from granulocyte-macrophage progenitors (GMPs) were markedly reduced in Stat5a/b mutants. GMPs showed impaired colony-formation ability with reduced number and size of colonies on GM-CSF stimulation. Moreover, continuous cell fate analyses by time-lapse microscopy and single cell tracking revealed that Stat5a/b-null GMPs showed both delayed cell-cycle progression and increased cell death. Finally, transcriptome analysis indicated that STAT5A/B directs GM-CSF signaling through the regulation of proliferation and survival genes.

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