Maintenance of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) pool depends on fine balance between self-renewal and differentiation of HSCs. HSCs normally reside within the bone marrow niche of an adult mammal. The embryonic development of HSCs is a complex process that involves the migration of developing HSCs in multiple anatomical sites. Throughout the process, developing HSCs receive internal (transcriptional program) and external (HSC niche) signals, which direct them to maintain balance between self-renewal and differentiation, also to generate a pool of HSCs. In physiological condition HSCs differentiate into all mature cell types present in the blood. However, in pathological condition they may differentiate into non-hematological cells according to the need of the body. It was shown that HSCs can transdifferentiate into cell types that do not belong to the hematopoietic system suggests a complete paradigm shift of the hierarchical hematopoietic tree. This review describes the developmental origins and regulation of HSCs focusing on developmental signals that induce the adult hematopoietic stem cell program, as these informations are very critical for manipulating conditions for expansion of HSCs in ex vivo condition. This review also states clinical application and related patents using HSC.
Keywords: Hematopoietic stem cells, embryonic development, regulation, self-renewal, differentiation, transdifferentiation, clinical application, patents, embryogenesis, aorta-gonad-mesonephros (AGM), BM niche, haemostatic regulation, non-malignant hematological disorders, neurological disorders, myocardial ischemia