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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Isolation of small, primitive human hematopoietic stem cells: distribution of cell surface cytokine receptors and growth in SCID-Hu mice.

Human CD34+ cells were subfractionated into three size classes using counterflow centrifugal elutriation followed by immunoadsorption to polystyrene cell separation devices. The three CD34+ cell fractions (Fr), Fr 25/29, Fr 33/37, and Fr RO, had mean sizes of 8.5, 9.3 and 13.5 microns, respectively. The majority of cells in the large Fr RO CD34+ cell population expressed the committed stage antigens CD33, CD19, CD38, or HLA-DR and contained the majority of granulocyte-macrophage colony-forming units (CFU-GM), burst-forming units-erythroid (BFU-E), and CFU-mixed lineage (GEMM). In contrast, the small Fr 25/29 CD34+ cells were devoid of committed cell surface antigens and lacked colony-forming activity. When seeded to allogeneic stroma, Fr RO CD34+ cells produced few CFU-GM at week 5, whereas cells from the Fr 25/29 CD34+ cell population showed a 30- to 55-fold expansion of myeloid progenitors at this same time point. Furthermore, CD34+ cells from each size fraction supported ontogeny of T cells in human thymus/liver grafts in severe combined immunodeficient (SCID) mice. Upon cell cycle analyses, greater than 97% of the Fr 25/29 CD34+ cells were in G0/G1 phase, whereas greater proportions of the two larger CD34+ cell fractions were in active cell cycle. Binding of the cytokines interleukin (IL)-1 alpha, IL-3, IL-6, stem cell factor ( SCF), macrophage inhibitory protein (MIP)-1 alpha, granulocyte colony-stimulating factor ( G-CSF), and granulocyte-macrophage (GM)-CSF to these CD34+ cell populations was also analyzed by flow cytometry. As compared with the larger CD34+ cell fractions, cells in the small Fr 25/29 CD34+ cell population possessed the highest numbers of receptors for SCF, MIP1 alpha, and IL-1 alpha. Collectively, these results indicate that the Fr 25/29 CD34+ cell is a very primitive, quiescent progenitor cell population possessing a high number of receptors for SCF and MIP1 alpha and capable of yielding both myeloid and lymphoid lineages when placed in appropriate in vitro or in vivo culture conditions.[1]


  1. Isolation of small, primitive human hematopoietic stem cells: distribution of cell surface cytokine receptors and growth in SCID-Hu mice. Wagner, J.E., Collins, D., Fuller, S., Schain, L.R., Berson, A.E., Almici, C., Hall, M.A., Chen, K.E., Okarma, T.B., Lebkowski, J.S. Blood (1995) [Pubmed]
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