According to new research from the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, hematopoietic stem cells [stem cells that produce blood] are directly regulated by megakaryocytes, the blood cells responsible for healing wounds. The researchers found that megakaryotes produce two growth factors; one that signals for hematopoietic stem cells to proliferate, and one that keeps them in an inactive state. This relationship controls the amount of blood being produced in the body.
Recently, researchers utilized stem cells to successfully treat six children with rare genetic diseases. Three of the children were born with Metachromatic Leukodystrophy (MLD), a hereditary neurodegenerative disease. The other three children were born with Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome (WAS), a hereditary immune system disorder.