Support the Forsberg Lab

Camilla Forsberg

Where does blood come from?

The Forsberg lab focuses on stem cell fate decisions of the blood system. Hematopoietic stem cells are responsible for generating a life-long supply of mature blood cells. Each stem cell is capable of making all of the mature blood cell types with widely different functions: some blood cells specialize in carrying oxygen, others fight off infections, and still others prevent bleeding in the process of blood clotting. How does a stem cell decide which cell type to give rise to? Are these decisions made by the stem cell itself, by its descendant multipotent progenitors, or both? How are these decisions dysregulated to cause cancer and other disorders?

We tackle these questions from multiple angles - by in vivo and in vitro experimental approaches, by focusing on specific molecules as well as analyzing global changes. Ultimately, we want to understand the molecular determinants of hematopoietic stem cell fate decisions so that we can prevent and treat both genetic and acquired disorders of the hematopoietic system, including anemia, autoimmune disease, leukemias and lymphomas.

Postdoctoral positions in stem cell research available

We're accepting postdoctoral applications for our new IRACDA postdoctoral training  program! Please email Dr. Forsberg if you are interested in performing your IRACDA research in the Forsberg lab. The next IRACDA program application deadline will be in August, 2021.

NOW OPEN: Research Specialist position for a candidate with strengths in cell and molecular biology, including plasmid cloning and library generation. Please apply here:


Congratulations to Atesh, Taylor and Donna for their new paper in Development.  IL7Rα, but not Flk2, is required for hematopoietic stem cell reconstitution of tissue-resident lymphoid cells.

Congratulations to Tobin on your Undergraduate Research in Science and Technology award!

In press: Check out our new stories on aging and megakaryocytes, chromatin accessibility, and effects of acute loss of Robo4 on HSC trafficking. Congrats to our researchers for excellent advances in hematopoiesis.

Congratulations to Dr. Bryce Manso for your selection as an IRACDA postdoctoral fellow!

Congratulations to Alessandra Rodriguez y Baena for her new TRDRP pre-doctoral fellowship! And for passing your qualifying exam, with honors! 

New publication in Stem Cells collaboration with the Selleri and Schroeder labs:

"Ubiquitous overexpression of CXCL12 confers radiation protection and enhances mobilization of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells" by Smrithi Rajendiran, Stephanie Smith-Berdan, Leo Kunz, Maurizio Risolino, Licia Selleri, Timm Schroeder, E Camilla Forsberg

How does Viagra affect your stem cells? New publication in Stem Cell Reports and press release on October 10, 2019. Congrats to authors Stephanie, Alyssa and Smrithi!

Fellowships, fellowships, fellowships! Congratulations to PhD students Eric Martin, Donna Poscablo, Taylor Cool and Atesh Worthington for fellowships from the NIH, HHMI, AHA, and TRDRP! 

A new R01 grant from the National Institute of Aging will support our efforts to understand how aging affects the hematopoietic and cardiovascular systems.

Our new paper on development of tissue-resident macrophages is now online in the journal Development! Also read the Highlights feature here. Congrats to authors Taylor Cool and Atesh Worthington!


BLOOD ON TAP! PhD students Atesh Worthington and Donna Poscablo will present their research on blood stem cells at the CATALYST in downtown Santa Cruz, August 12, 2019, at 7 pm. Open to all - please join us!

"They grow up so fast: Development and aging of blood" - watch video here!



* = Forsberg lab member

Selected for “Faculty of 1000” 

Cover imageRobo4
Comment in: Cell Stem Cell 2011 Jan 7;8(1):6-7. Moore K. “A roundabout way to the niche”
Comment in: Nature 2011 Jan 20; 469(7330). Research Highlights, “Stem cells: Robo protein guide for cell transplants”
Selected for “Faculty of 1000” 

  • Chang, E.1, Forsberg, E.C.1, Wu, J., Wang, B., Prohaska, S.S1., Allsopp, R., Weissman, I.L., and Cooke, J.P. (2010) Cholinergic activation of hematopoietic stem cells. Vasc Med. Oct;15(5):375- 85.

  • Marlow, R., Binnewies, M., Monica, S., Strickland, P., Forsberg, E.C., Li, D.Y., and Hinck, L. (2010) Vascular Robo4 restricts pro-angiogenic epithelial signaling in breast. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 107(23):10520-5. Epub 2010 May 24.

  • Santaguida, M., Schepers, K., King, B., Sabnis, A.J., Forsberg, E.C., Attema, J.L., Braun, B.S., and Passegué, E. (2009). JunB protects against myeloid malignancies by limiting hematopoietic stem cell proliferation and differentiation without affecting self-renewal. Cancer Cell, 5: 341-52.

  • *Forsberg, E.C. and *Smith-Berdan, S. (2009) Parsing the niche code: the molecular mechanisms governing hematopoietic stem cell adhesion and differentiation. Haematologica 94(11):1477-81.  Parsing

Cover image

  • Forsberg, E.C., Passegue, E1., Prohaska, S.S1., Wagers, A.J1., Koeva, M., Stuart, J.M., and Weissman, I.L. (2009) Molecular signatures of quiescent and mobilized hematopoietic stem cells and leukemic stem cells. PLoS One Jan 20;5(1):e8785.
  • Ooi, A.G.L., Karsunky, H., Majeti, R., Butz, S., Vestweber, D., Ishida, T., Quertermous, T., Weissman, I.L., and Forsberg, E.C. (2008) The adhesion molecule ESAM1 is a selective marker for hematopoietic stem cells. Stem Cells. 2008 Dec 11, Epub ahead of print.
  • Attema JL, Papathanasiou P, Forsberg EC, Xu J, Smale ST, Weissman IL. Epigenetic characterization of hematopoietic stem cell differentiation using miniChIP and bisulfite sequencing analysis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 Jul 24;104(30):12371-6. Epub 2007 Jul 18.
  • Forsberg EC, Bhattacharya D, Weissman IL. Hematopoietic stem cells: expression profiling and beyond. Stem Cell Rev. 2006;2(1):23-30. Review.
  • Forsberg EC, Serwold T, Kogan S, Weissman IL, Passegué E. New evidence supporting megakaryocyte-erythrocyte potential of flk2/flt3+ multipotent hematopoietic progenitors. Cell. 2006 Jul 28;126(2):415-26.
  • Forsberg EC, Prohaska SS, Katzman S, Heffner GC, Stuart JM, Weissman IL. Differential expression of novel potential regulators in hematopoietic stem cells. PLoS Genet. 2005 Sep;1(3):e28.