RESEARCH ARTICLE


The Role of Eph Receptor Tyrosine Kinases and Ephrin Ligands in Hematopoietic Cell Development and Function



Michael J. Ting , Andrew W. Boyd *
Leukaemia Foundation Research Unit, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Australia


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© 2008 Ting et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, 300 Herston Road, Herston, Queensland, 4006, Australia; Tel: +61 7 33062387; E-mail: Andrew.boyd@qimr.edu.au


Abstract

The Eph receptor tyrosine kinases form the largest sub-family of the Receptor tyrosine kinases. Eph receptors interact with membrane bound ligands, termed ephrins. Eph-ephrin interactions have significant roles during mammalian development where they mediate such processes as cell adhesion and migration. Although Eph/ephrin expression is low in adult tissues evidence is accumulating which indicates that Eph and ephrins continue to play significant roles in postembryonic tissues. In this review we describe the current understanding of the function of Eph-ephrin signaling in human and mouse hematopoiesis. Ephs and ephrins have been shown to regulate the differentiation of hematopoietic cells, to direct lymphoid development as well as immune function. Whilst much still remains to be learned about the role of Ephephrin signaling in hematopoieis it is already clear that this system exerts important regulatory effects on differentiation, cell migration and effector function. The possibility that these molecules may be therapeutic targets is also discussed.

Keywords: Eph Receptor, ephrin, hematopoiesis, T Lymphocyte.