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Balanced production of immune cells is critical for the maintenance of steady-state immune surveillance, and increased production of myeloid cells is sometimes necessary to eliminate pathogens. Hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell (HSPC) sensing of commensal microbes and invading pathogens has a notable impact on hematopoiesis. In this review, we examine how commensal microbes regulate bone marrow HSPC activity to maintain balanced hematopoiesis in the steady state, and how HSPCs proliferate and differentiate during emergency myelopoiesis in response to infection. HSPCs express a variety of pattern recognition receptors and cytokine receptors that they use to sense the presence of microbes, either directly via detection of microbial components and metabolites, or indirectly by responding to cytokines produced by other host cells. We describe direct and indirect mechanisms of microbial sensing by HSPCs and highlight evidence demonstrating long-term effects of acute and chronic microbial stimuli on HSPCs. We also discuss a possible connection between myeloid-biased hematopoiesis and elevated levels of circulating microbiome-derived components in the context of aging and metabolic stress. Finally, we highlight the prospect of trained immunity-based vaccines that could exploit microbial stimulation of HSPCs. © The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email:


Pijus K Barman, Helen S Goodridge. Microbial Sensing by Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells. Stem cells (Dayton, Ohio). 2022 Mar 03;40(1):14-21

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PMID: 35511863

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