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Exp Cell Res. 2014 Dec 10;329(2):207-13. doi: 10.1016/j.yexcr.2014.07.011. Epub 2014 Jul 18.

Instruction of hematopoietic lineage choice by cytokine signaling.

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  • 1Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE), ETH Zurich, Mattenstrasse 26, 4058 Basel, Switzerland.
  • 2Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE), ETH Zurich, Mattenstrasse 26, 4058 Basel, Switzerland. Electronic address:


Hematopoiesis is the cumulative consequence of finely tuned signaling pathways activated through extrinsic factors, such as local niche signals and systemic hematopoietic cytokines. Whether extrinsic factors actively instruct the lineage choice of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells or are only selectively allowing survival and proliferation of already intrinsically lineage-committed cells has been debated over decades. Recent results demonstrated that cytokines can instruct lineage choice. However, the precise function of individual cytokine-triggered signaling molecules in inducing cellular events like proliferation, lineage choice, and differentiation remains largely elusive. Signal transduction pathways activated by different cytokine receptors are highly overlapping, but support the production of distinct hematopoietic lineages. Cellular context, signaling dynamics, and the crosstalk of different signaling pathways determine the cellular response of a given extrinsic signal. New tools to manipulate and continuously quantify signaling events at the single cell level are therefore required to thoroughly interrogate how dynamic signaling networks yield a specific cellular response.

Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Biosensors; Cytokines; Hematopoiesis; Lineage choice; Signaling

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