Hematopoietic stem cell injury induced by ionizing radiation

Lijian Shao, Yi Luo, Daohong Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

189 Scopus citations


Significance: Exposure to ionizing radiation (IR) as the result of nuclear accidents or terrorist attacks is a significant threat and a major medical concern. Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) injury is the primary cause of death after accidental or intentional exposure to a moderate or high dose of IR. Protecting HSCs from IR should be a primary goal in the development of novel medical countermeasures against radiation. Recent Advances: Significant progress has been made in our understanding of the mechanisms by which IR causes HSC damage. The mechanisms include (i) induction of HSC apoptosis via the p53-Puma pathway; (ii) promotion of HSC differentiation via the activation of the G-CSF/Stat3/BATF-dependent differentiation checkpoint; (iii) induction of HSC senescence via the ROS-p38 pathway; and (iv) damage to the HSC niche. Critical Issues: Induction of apoptosis in HSCs and hematopoietic progenitor cells is primarily responsible for IR-induced acute bone marrow (BM) injury. Long-term BM suppression caused by IR is mainly attributable to the induction of HSC senescence. However, the promotion of HSC differentiation and damage to the HSC niche can contribute to both the acute and long-term effects of IR on the hematopoietic system. Future Directions: In this review, we have summarized a number of recent findings that provide new insights into the mechanisms whereby IR damages HSCs. These findings will provide new opportunities for developing a mechanism-based strategy to prevent and/or mitigate IR-induced BM suppression. Antioxid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1447-1462
Number of pages16
JournalAntioxidants and Redox Signaling
Issue number9
StatePublished - Mar 20 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Hematopoietic stem cell injury induced by ionizing radiation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this