Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) reside in specialized micro-environments (niches) in the bone marrow. There is emerging evidence that distinct populations of stromal cells in the bone marrow regulate specific subsets of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPC), including HSCs themselves. The central hypothesis of our research is that alterations in the bone marrow microenvironment contribute to the pathogenesis of myeloid malignancies.  This research is focused on characterizing alterations in the bone marrow microenvironment in myeloid malignancies and defining the signals that induce these changes.  Finally, these data are being used  to tackle the important question of how alterations in stromal cells contribute to disease pathogenesis in MPN and MDS. 

Loss of TGF-b signaling in mesenchymal stromal cells results in profound alterations in the bone marrow niche. 

Wild-Type Bone Marrow Niche
Osx-Cre Tgfbr2 KO Bone Marrow Niche

Images by Dr. Grazia Abou Ezzi