In the hematopoietic system, a small number of stem cells produce a progeny of several distinct lineages. During ontogeny, they arise in the aorta-gonadmesonephros region of the embryo and the placenta, afterwards colonise the liver and finally the bone marrow. After this fetal phase of rapid expansion, the number of hematopoietic stem cells continues to grow, in order to sustain the increasing blood volume of the developing newborn, and eventually reaches a steady-state. The kinetics of this growth are mirrored by the rates of telomere shortening in leukocytes. During adulthood, hematopoietic stem cells undergo a very small number of cell divisions. Nonetheless, they are subjected to aging, eventually reducing their potential to produce differentiated progeny. The causal relationships between telomere shortening, DNA damage, epigenetic changes, and aging have still to be elucidated.
Udroiu, I., Sgura, A. (2021). Growing and aging of hematopoietic stem cells. WORLD JOURNAL OF STEM CELLS, 13(6), 594-604 [10.4252/wjsc.v13.i6.594].