Scientists from the University of Würzburg give fascinating 3D-insights into the bone marrow, and successfully elucidated new details about the process of thrombocyte generation. These important findings could contribute to optimized therapeutic approaches for patients with bleeding disorders.
Thrombocytes, also known as platelets, play an important role in wound healing and tissue repair at sites of vascular damage by facilitating blood coagulation. As they possess only a short lifespan, new thrombocytes need to be constantly generated in the body. Platelets originate from the bone marrow where giant precursor cells, so-called megakaryocytes, undergo a complex maturation process and finally release platelets into the bloodstream.
Light Sheet Fluorescence Microscopy (LSFM): Reconstruction of a sternum bone (detailed view). Megakaryocytes (green) are mostly attached to vessels (red). Bone structure is depicted in grey.
Photo: Heinze Group
Light Sheet Fluorescence Microscopy (LSFM): Reconstruction of a murine femur bone (overview). Megakaryocytes (green) embedded into a dense vessel network (red) and the bone (grey).
Photo: Heinze Group
In the nursery of the thrombocytes it is calmer than one thought
So far, these precursor cells have been believed to migrate through the bone marrow to reach the vessel. By applying a combination of modern microscopy methods and computer simulations, researchers from the Rudolf Virchow Center for Experimental Biomedicine and the University Hospital of Würzburg were now able to disprove this theory.
The team of Prof. Katrin Heinze and Dr. David Stegner could show that most megakaryocytes already originate from the vascular niche, that is in close proximity to the vessel. The remaining precursor cells are uniformly distributed in the bone marrow and are typically so large and flexible in shape that they can reach the vessel by small (wobble) movements in the dense vessel network of the bone marrow.
"Only the combination of all information from intravital and light-sheet microscopy has made these findings possible," says Professor Katrin Heinze, director of the study. She further explains: "In addition, we were able to show how the 3D images of vessels and cells become perfect biological templates for realistic, eye-opening simulations of cell distributions in the bone marrow".
Complementary microscopy methods allow a virtual journey through the bone marrow
Dr. David Stegner, corresponding author of the new study, adds: "We have long suspected that the existing models of thrombopoiesis are insufficient or false, but it was difficult to prove this experimentally. This has now been achieved by high-resolution insights into the intact bone!“ The two leaders of the study point out that their collaboration was not only a stroke of luck, but a future-oriented decision that will continue for a long time to come.
"Based on our findings, new treatment strategies for diseases that are associated with reduced platelet formation could be developed in the future", hopes Dr. Stegner. The researchers from Würzburg recently published their new findings in the scientific journal Nature Communications.
Stegner, D. et al. (2017). Thrombopoiesis is spatially regulated by the bone marrow vasculature. Nature Communications 8(127). DOI: 10.1038/s41467-017-00201-7
Prof. Dr. Katrin Heinze (Molecular Microscopy, Rudolf Virchow Center)
Phone +49 (0)9 31/ 31 - 84214, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. David Stegner (group leader, Vascular Imaging)
Phone +49 (0)9 31/ 31 – 80419, email@example.com
Dr. Frank Sommerlandt (Public Science Center, Rudolf-Virchow-Zentrum)
Phone +49 (0)9 31/ 31 - 88449, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Frank Sommerlandt | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
A new molecular player involved in T cell activation
07.12.2018 | Tokyo Institute of Technology
News About a Plant Hormone
07.12.2018 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg
What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.
Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...
Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.
Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...
New Project SNAPSTER: Novel luminescent materials by encapsulating phosphorescent metal clusters with organic liquid crystals
Nowadays energy conversion in lighting and optoelectronic devices requires the use of rare earth oxides.
Scientists have discovered the first synthetic material that becomes thicker - at the molecular level - as it is stretched.
Researchers led by Dr Devesh Mistry from the University of Leeds discovered a new non-porous material that has unique and inherent "auxetic" stretching...
Scientists from the Theory Department of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science (CFEL) in Hamburg have shown through theoretical calculations and computer simulations that the force between electrons and lattice distortions in an atomically thin two-dimensional superconductor can be controlled with virtual photons. This could aid the development of new superconductors for energy-saving devices and many other technical applications.
The vacuum is not empty. It may sound like magic to laypeople but it has occupied physicists since the birth of quantum mechanics.
06.12.2018 | Event News
03.12.2018 | Event News
28.11.2018 | Event News
07.12.2018 | Life Sciences
07.12.2018 | Materials Sciences
07.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy