The latest in a rapid evolution of findings about the transformational
powers of stem cells shows that bone marrow produces stem cells capable of
becoming liver cells.
"This is an exciting finding and incredibly surprising because the bone
marrow has never been considered as a source of liver cells," said study author
Diane Krause, MD, of Yale University School of Medicine.
In the study, researchers analyzed liver samples from two women with
leukemia who received bone marrow transplants from male donors and four men
with severe liver disease who received liver transplants from female donors.
Using fluorescent microscopy, they detected Y chromosomes in all the patients'
liver cells. In the women, the donated bone marrow was the only possible source
of Y chromosomes. Bone marrow is the most likely source of Y chromosomes in
liver samples from the men, the researchers said.
Liver Cells From Bone Marrow. JAMA. 2000;284(4):430. doi:10.1001/jama.284.4.430