Modelling hematopoiesis in health and disease

Diogo Peixoto, David Dingli, Jorge M. Pacheco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Hematopoiesis is the process responsible for maintaining the number of circulating blood cells that are undergoing continuous turnover. At the root of this process are the hematopoietic stem cells (HSC), that replicate slowly to self-renew and give rise to progeny cells that proceed along the path of differentiation. The process is complex, with the cells responding to a wide variety of cytokines and growth factors. We discuss the mathematics of hematopoiesis based on stochastic cell behavior. Multiple compartments are introduced to keep track of each cell division process and increasing differentiation. The same mathematical model that describes normal hematopoiesis across mammals as a stable steady state of a hierarchical stochastic process is also used to understand the detailed dynamics of various disorders both in humans and in animal models. The microecology of the multitude of cell lineages that constitute what we call troubled hematopoiesis evolves in time under mutation and selection, the paradigmatic components of Darwinian evolution. Thus, the present approach provides a novel perspective for looking at cancer progression and cure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1546-1557
Number of pages12
JournalMathematical and Computer Modelling
Issue number7-8
StatePublished - Apr 2011


  • Cancer modelling
  • Hematopoiesis
  • Mathematical modelling
  • Somatic evolution of cancer
  • Stochastic processes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Computer Science Applications


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