Current Stem Cell Reports

, Volume 4, Issue 4, pp 310–317 | Cite as

Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Red Blood Cells, Megakaryocytes, and Platelets: Progress and Challenges

  • Hyun Hyung An
  • Mortimer Poncz
  • Stella T. ChouEmail author
Cellular Therapies: Preclinical and Clinical (EM Horwitz, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Cellular Therapies: Preclinical and Clinical


Purpose of Review

Human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) represent an attractive source to generate in vitro-derived red blood cells, megakaryocytes, and platelets for transfusion support. We review the progress made and challenges remaining for generating terminally differentiated red cells and platelets suitable for clinical application.

Recent Findings

Human iPSC hematopoietic differentiation protocols primarily recapitulate the primitive stage of hematopoiesis, but a different hematopoietic progenitor that mimics the second wave of hematopoiesis has been identified that generates definitive blood cells. Coupled with strategies to improve maturation and expansion, this provides new opportunities to generate red cells and platelets that can mature, enucleate, and proliferate to clinical scale.


The major challenges of human iPSC-derived transfusion products are terminal differentiation and scalability. Despite these challenges, iPSCs offer a new source for unlimited generation of red cells and platelets with rare phenotypes for transfusion, blood bank reagents, and novel drug delivery systems.


Induced pluripotent stem cells Red blood cells Megakaryocytes Platelets In vitro-derived blood cells Transfusion 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Stella T. Chou reports grants from National Institutes of Health, during the conduct of the study. Hyun Hyung An and Mortimer Poncz declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hyun Hyung An
    • 1
  • Mortimer Poncz
    • 2
    • 3
  • Stella T. Chou
    • 3
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of PediatricsThe Children’s Hospital of PhiladelphiaPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Department of PediatricsThe Children’s Hospital of PhiladelphiaPhiladelphiaUSA
  3. 3.Perelman School of Medicine at the University of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  4. 4.Department of PediatricsThe Children’s Hospital of PhiladelphiaPhiladelphiaUSA

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