Owen Tamplin

Position title: Assistant Professor & DEI Community of Practice Lead

Email: tamplin@wisc.edu

Phone: Phone: (608) 890-0938

RESEARCH INTERESTS - The hematopoietic stem cell microenvironment

Headshot of Owen Tamplin


Address: 4459 WIMR II – 1111 Highland Ave. – Madison, WI 53705
Additional Affiliations:

UW Carbone Cancer Center (Tumor Microenvironment)

Visit the Tamplin lab website



B.Sc., McGill University, Canada, Biochemistry
Ph.D., University of Toronto, Canada, Molecular Genetics (with Janet Rossant)
Postdoctoral Research, Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Boston (with Leonard Zon)


In the Tamplin lab, we study the basic biology of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and their microenvironment. These stem cells are clinically important as a curative treatment for many blood cancers and diseases. A better understanding of HSCs and their supportive niche will help us improve these treatments and thereby patient survival.

We are investigating the intercellular crosstalk between a stem cell and its surrounding niche cells. The means of communication can be paracrine signals, direct contact, or transfer of cellular material. Our overall research goal is to understand mechanistically how different signals are translated into HSC fate decisions.

We use complementary mouse and zebrafish model organisms. The zebrafish is the only vertebrate genetic model that allows high-resolution live imaging of endogenous cellular behaviors. We can harness the strengths of the zebrafish model to develop and test unique hypotheses that could not be acquired using any other system. We then use the mouse model to test translation of our findings to a mammalian system.

Representative Publications

  • *Tamplin OJ, *Durand EM, Carr LA, Childs SJ, Hagedorn EJ, Li P, Yzaguirre AD, Speck NA, Zon, LI. Hematopoietic stem cell arrival triggers dynamic remodeling of the perivascular niche.  Cell 2015, 160:241-252.e
  • Jing L, Tamplin OJ, Chen MJ, Deng Q, Patterson S, Kim PG, Durand EM, McNeil1 A, Green JM, Matsuura S, Ablain J, Brandt MK, Schlaeger TM, Huttenlocher A, Daley GQ, Ravid K, Zon LI. Adenosine signaling promotes hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell emergence. The Journal of Experimental Medicine 2015, 212(5):649-663.
  • *Pulin L, *Lahvic JL, *Binder V, Pugach EK, Riley EB, Tamplin OJ, Panigrahy D, Bowman TV, Barrett FG, Heffner GC, McKinney-Freeman S, Schlaeger TM, Daley GQ, Zeldin DC, Zon LI. Epoxyeicosatrienoic acids enhance embryonic haematopoiesis and adult marrow engraftment. (Cover story) Nature 2015, 523(7561): 468-471.
  • Anderson H, Patch TC, Reddy PN, Hagedorn EJ, Kim PG, Soltis KA, Chen MJ, Tamplin OJ, Frye M, MacLean GA, Hübner K, Bauer DE, Kanki JP, Vogin G, Huston NC, Nguyen M, Fujiwara Y, Paw BH, Vestweber D, Zon LI, Orkin SH, Daley GQ, Shah DI. Hematopoietic stem cells develop in the absence of endothelial cadherin 5 expression. Blood 2015 126(26):2811-20.
  • Blaser BW, Moore JL, Hagedorn EJ, Li B, Riquelme R, Lichtig A, Yang S, Zhou Y, Tamplin OJ, Binder V, Zon LI. CXCR1 remodels the vascular niche to promote hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell engraftment. The Journal of Experimental Medicine 2017 214(4): 1011–1027.
  • *Uenishi G, *Jung HS, Kumar A, Park MA, Hadland B, McLeod E, Raymond M, Moskvin O, Zimmermann C, Theisen D, Swanson D, Tamplin OJ, Zon LI, Thomson J, Bernstein I, Slukvin I. NOTCH Signaling Specifies Arterial-Type Definitive Hemogenic Endothelium from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells. Nature Communications 2018, 9(1), 1828.
  • Agarwala S, Tamplin OJ. Neural crossroads in the hematopoietic stem cell niche (Review). Trends in Cell Biology 2018, 28(12), 987–998.
  • *Shao L, *Elujoba-Bridenstine A, Zink KE, Sanchez LM, Cox BJ, Pollok KE, Sinn AL, Bailey BJ, Sims EC, Cooper SH, Broxmeyer HE, **Pajcini KV, **Tamplin OJ. The neurotransmitter receptor Gabbr1 regulates proliferation and function of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. Blood. 137(6):775-787, 2021.
  • Schiavo RK, Tamplin OJ. Vascular endothelial growth factor c regulates hematopoietic stem cell fate in the dorsal aorta. Development. 2022 Jan 15;149(2):dev199498. doi: 10.1242/dev.199498. Epub 2022 Jan 18.
  • *Agarwala S, *Kim K-Y, Phan S, Ju S, Kong YE, Castillon GA, Bushong EA, **Ellisman MH, **Tamplin OJ. Defining the ultrastructure of the hematopoietic stem cell niche by correlative light and electron microscopy. eLife. 2022;11. Epub 2022/08/10. doi: 10.7554/eLife.64835.