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colony-stimulating factor

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noun
immunol any of a number of substances, secreted by the bone marrow, that cause stem cells to proliferate and differentiate, forming colonies of specific blood cells. Synthetic forms are being tested for their ability to reduce the toxic effects of chemotherapyAbbreviation: CSF
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Scientific definitions for colony-stimulating factor

colony stimulating factor

Any of various glycoproteins that act to promote the production and differentiation of specific blood cell types. Colony stimulating factors circulate in the blood, acting as hormones, and are also secreted locally. An example is erythropoietin, which is produced in the kidney and regulates the formation of red blood cells from progenitor cells in the bone marrow.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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