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Hematopoietic Stem Cell Development Laboratory

Woods Group

Our Research

Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are rare cells in the body that possess the ability to generate vast numbers of a multitude of specialised blood cell types required for our survival. HSCs are first generated in the early embryo and undergo a series of maturation processes that ultimately give rise to their key adult features of self-renewal, blood cell generation, and transplant capability. Our laboratory uses embryonic-like stem cells, termed induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, as the starting material in our culture systems to generate de novo hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells.  

Research areas include: 

  • Metabolic regulation in HSC development
  • Mitigation of cellular stress in HSC development culture systems
  • The molecular processes in endothelial-to-hematopoietic transition
  • Neurotransmitter signalling in HSC development
  • Cell Therapy modelling, correcting human disease models using iPS derived blood cells


  • Our principle goal is to understand the molecular processes involved in hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) development and recapitulate these processes in cell culture systems of pluripotent stem cells. 
  • With this understanding, we ultimately aim to provide an unlimited source of patient matched HSCs patients with blood disorders and malignancies.
  • We aim to be able to provide these cells to patients in need through academic/industrial partners within the next 7-10 years.


List of Team Woods' publications

Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) transplantation is a life-saving procedure for tens of thousands of patients each year for the treatment of hematological diseases and malignancies. Unfortunately, the limited availability of suitably matched donors of HSCs, leaves a significant fraction of patients (up to 30%) unable to undergo transplantation.  The ability to generate de novo HSCs from an unlimited source of cells, such as from a patient derived iPS cells, would enable the generation of an unlimited supply of matched transplantable HSCs for therapeutic purposes.


(name linked to profile in Lund University research portal)

Niels-Bjarne Woods

Principal Investigator, Niels-Bjarne [dot] Woods [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (Niels-Bjarne[dot]Woods[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se)

Roger Rönn

Researcher, Roger [dot] Ronn [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (Roger[dot]Ronn[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se)

Xiaojie Xian

Staff Scientist, Xiaojie [dot] Xian [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (Xiaojie[dot]Xian[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se)

Shuh Wen Aung

Postdoc, shuh_wen [dot] aung [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (shuh_wen[dot]aung[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se) 

Niels-Bjarne Woods

Niels-Bjarne Woods

Principal Investigator
Associate Professor 
Division of Molecular Medicine and Gene Therapy
Phone: +46 46 222 37 62 
Email: niels-bjarne [dot] woods [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (Niels-Bjarne[dot]Woods[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se) 

Profile in Lund University research portal