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Tracing stem cells after transplantation

Medical-scientific research on DNA mutations in stem cells to understand and improve blood formation after stem cell transplantation.
Who can enter

Children and adults who have undergone a donor hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in the past, or who donated hematopoietic stem cells to a family member also participating in this study.


The goal of this study is to determine how many stem cells actively contribute to hematopoiesis (blood formation) after transplantation, and to unravel fundamental properties by which these cells regenerate blood. Insight into these properties may inspire new treatment strategies aiming to improve blood formation after transplantation, and may lead to more successful transplantations.


Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is a life-saving treatment for certain hematologic malignancies, severe immune deficiency, metabolic diseases and bone marrow failure syndromes. During a hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, the patient’s blood system is replaced by that of a healthy donor. Regrettably, a stem cell transplantation is not always successful: In 5-10% of transplantations, the donor stem cells fail to engraft in the recipient. To better understand why a stem cell transplant does or does not succeed, scientific research on the fundamental properties of these cells is needed.

In this study, we use an innovative technology, which relies on in-depth characterization of DNA mutations in single stem cells. DNA is present in each cell of our bodies, and all cells of one person have nearly identical DNA. Nonetheless, there are minor differences in the DNA between individual cells. In this study, we will use these DNA-differences to understand how stem cells regenerate blood in recipients of hematopoietic stem cell transplantations.

This is a so-called observational study, for which a single blood sample is collected.

This study is temporarily closed for inclusion.

Last reviewed

April 22, 2022