Vinblastine was administered to anemic baboons to test whether stimulation of Hb F takes place following distortion of erythropoiesis by an M-stage-specific compound. The treatments elicited erythroid cell cytoreduction followed by regeneration. During the phase of reticulocyte reduction, gamma/gamma + beta biosynthetic ratios increased without increment in F reticulocytes, suggesting that there was increased production of Hb F per F cell. The phase of reticulocyte regeneration was associated with sharp increments in relative (percentage) and absolute F reticulocytes. These data suggest that perturbations of erythropoiesis underlie the stimulation of Hb F synthesis by vinblastine. Accelerated or abnormal precursor maturation may account for the release of shift F reticulocytes with higher Hb F content, during the reduction phase. Accelerated total erythroid differentiation/maturation may account for the increment in F reticulocyte numbers during the phase of regeneneration.
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