The biology of stem cell factor, a new hematopietic growth factor involved in stem cell regulation
Recently, a new hematopoietic growth factor, stem cell factor, the ligand for the c-kit-proto-oncogene, has been cloned. The gene for this factor or for its receptor are deleted in two well know series of mice mutants which display pleiotropic stem cell defects. Therefore, this factor supposedly plays an important role in stem cell biology. This paper reviews some of the elegant genetic work which led to the discovery of the factor and of its receptor, the biological effects that this factor exerts in the hematopoietic system in normal individuals and in patients with Diamond-Blackfan anemia and speculates on some of its potential clinical applications. © 1993 Springer-Verlag.
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