Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) self-renewal is tightly regulated by a complex crosstalk between many cell-intrinsic regulators and a variety of extrinsic signals from the stem cell niche. In this study, we examined whether the p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38) is one of the intrinsic regulators that can negatively regulate HSC self-renewal in vitro and whether inhibition of p38 activity with a small molecule inhibitor can promote HSC expansion ex vivo. The results from this study showed that sorted mouse bone marrow Lin−Sca1+c-kit+ cells (LSK+ cells) exhibited selective activation of p38 after culture in a serum-free medium supplemented with 100 ng/mL stem cell factor, thrombopoietin, and Flt3 ligand. The activation of p38 was associated with a significant reduction in HSCs and induction of apoptosis and cellular senescence in LSK+ cells and their progeny. Addition of the specific p38 inhibitor SB203580 (SB, 5 μM) to the culture inhibited the activation of p38 in LSK+ cells, which led to increase in HSC self-renewal and ex vivo expansion as shown by the cobblestone area forming cell assay, competitive repopulation, and serial transplantation. The increase in HSC expansion is likely attributable to SB-mediated inhibition of HSC apoptosis and senescence and upregulation of HoxB4 and CXCR4. These findings suggest that p38 plays an important role in the regulation of HSC self-renewal in vitro and inhibition of p38 activation with a small molecule inhibitor may represent a novel approach to promote ex vivo expansion of HSCs.
Cross-talk between hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and the cells comprising the niche is critical for maintaining stem cell activities. Yet little evidence supports the concept that HSCs regulate development of the niche. Here the ability of HSCs to directly regulate endosteal development was examined. Marrow was isolated 48h after ‘stressing’ mice with a single acute bleed or from control non-stressed animals. ‘Stressed’ and ‘non-stressed’ HSCs were co-cultured with bone marrow stromal cells to map mesenchymal fate. The data suggest that HSCs are able to guide mesenchymal differentiation towards the osteoblastic lineage under basal conditions. HSCs isolated from animals subjected to an acute stress were significantly better at inducing osteoblastic differentiation in vitro and in vivo than from control animals. Importantly, HSC-derived BMP-2 and BMP-6 were responsible for these activities. Furthermore, significant differences in the ability of HSCs to generate a BMP response following stress were noted in aged and in osteoporotic animals. Together these data suggest a coupling between HSC functions and bone turnover as in aging and in osteoporosis. For the first time, these results demonstrate that HSCs do not rest passively in their niche. Instead, they directly participate in bone formation and niche activities.
HSCs; Niche; Osteoblasts; MSCs; Endosteal
A balanced pool of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) in bone marrow is tightly regulated, and this regulation is disturbed in hematopoietic malignancies such as chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). The underlying mechanisms are largely unknown. Here we show that the Lin−Sca-1+c-Kit- (LSK−) cell population derived from HSC-containing Lin−Sca-1+c-Kit+ (LSK) cells has significantly higher numbers of apoptotic cells. Depletion of LSK cells by radiation or the cytotoxic chemical 5-fluorouracil results in an expansion of the LSK− population. In contrast, the LSK− population is reduced in CML mice, and depletion of leukemia stem cells (LSCs; BCR-ABL-expressing HSCs) by deleting Alox5 or by inhibiting heat shock protein 90 causes an increase in this LSK− population. The transition of LSK to LSK− cells is controlled by the Icsbp gene and its downstream gene Lyn, and regulation of this cellular transition is critical for the survival of normal LSK cells and LSCs. These results indicate a potential function of the LSK− cells in the regulation of LSK cells and LSCs.
Bone marrow hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) balance proliferation and differentiation by integrating complex transcriptional and post-translational mechanisms regulated by cell intrinsic and extrinsic factors. We found that transcripts of G0/G1 switch gene 2 (G0S2) are enriched in lineage− Sca-1+ c-kit+ (LSK) CD150+ CD48− CD41− cells, a population highly enriched for quiescent HSCs, whereas G0S2 expression is suppressed in dividing LSK CD150+ CD48− cells. Gain-of-function analyses using retroviral expression vectors in bone marrow cells showed that G0S2 localizes to the mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, and early endosomes in hematopoietic cells. Co-transplantation of bone marrow cells transduced with the control or G0S2 retrovirus led to increased chimerism of G0S2-overexpressing cells in femurs, although their contribution to the blood was reduced. This finding was correlated with increased quiescence in G0S2-overexpressing HSCs (LSK CD150+ CD48−) and progenitor cells (LS−K). Conversely, silencing of endogenous G0S2 expression in bone marrow cells increased blood chimerism upon transplantation and promoted HSC cell division, supporting an inhibitory role for G0S2 in HSC proliferation. A proteomic study revealed that the hydrophobic domain of G0S2 interacts with a domain of nucleolin that is rich in arginine-glycine-glycine repeats, which results in the retention of nucleolin in the cytosol. We showed that this cytosolic retention of nucleolin occurs in resting, but not proliferating, wild-type LSK CD150+ CD48− cells. Collectively, we propose a novel model of HSC quiescence in which elevated G0S2 expression can sequester nucleolin in the cytosol, precluding its pro-proliferation functions in the nucleolus.
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), rare primitive cells capable of reconstituting all blood cell lineages, are the only stem cells currently routinely used for therapeutic purposes. Clinical experience has shown that HSC number is an important limiting factor in treatment success. Strategies to expand HSCs are of great clinical appeal, as they would improve therapeutic use of these cells in stem cell transplantation and in conditions of bone marrow failure. The microenvironment in which HSCs reside, known as the niche, has long been considered a critical regulator of HSCs. Data accumulated over the past decade strongly confirm the importance of the niche in HSC behavior. A number of niche components as well as signaling pathways, such as Notch, have been implicated in the interaction of the microenvironment with HSCs and continue to be genetically evaluated in the hope of defining the critical elements that are required and which, if modified, can initiate HSC behaviors. In this review, we highlight the known characteristics of HSCs, challenges in their expansion, the niche phenomenon, and explain why niche stimulated HSC expansion is of utmost interest in the field, while beginning to bring to the fore potential caveats of niche manipulation. Lastly, the potential pitfalls of avoiding malignancy and controlling self-renewal versus differentiation will be briefly reviewed.
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are rare cells that have the unique ability to self-renew and differentiate into cells of all hematopoietic lineages. The expansion of HSCs has remained an important goal to develop advanced cell therapies for bone marrow transplantation and many blood disorders. Over the last several decades, there have been numerous attempts to expand HSCs in vitro using purified growth factors that are known to regulate HSCs. However, these attempts have been met with limited success for clinical applications. New developments in the HSC expansion field coupled with gene therapy and stem cell transplant should encourage progression in attractive treatment options for many disorders including hematologic conditions, immunodeficiencies, and genetic disorders.
Stem cell expansion; Gene therapy; Epigenetics; Umbilical cord blood; HOXB4; SALL4; Notch signaling
Maintenance of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) pool depends on fine balance between self-renewal and differentiation of HSCs. HSCs normally reside within the bone marrow niche of an adult mammal. The embryonic development of HSCs is a complex process that involves the migration of developing HSCs in multiple anatomical sites. Throughout the process, developing HSCs receive internal (transcriptional program) and external (HSC niche) signals, which direct them to maintain balance between self-renewal and differentiation, also to generate a pool of HSCs. In physiological condition HSCs differentiate into all mature cell types present in the blood. However, in pathological condition they may differentiate into non-hematological cells according to the need of the body. It was shown that HSCs can transdifferentiate into cell types that do not belong to the hematopoietic system suggests a complete paradigm shift of the hierarchical hematopoietic tree. This review describes the developmental origins and regulation of HSCs focusing on developmental signals that induce the adult hematopoietic stem cell program, as these informations are very critical for manipulating conditions for expansion of HSCs in ex vivo condition. This review also states clinical application and related patents using HSC.
Hematopoietic stem cells; embryonic development; regulation; self-renewal; differentiation; transdifferentiation; clinical application; patents
Bone marrow endothelial cells (ECs) are essential for reconstitution of hematopoiesis, but their role in self-renewal of long term-hematopoietic stem cells (LT-HSCs) is unknown. We have developed angiogenic models to demonstrate that EC-derived angiocrine growth factors support in vitro self-renewal and in vivo repopulation of authentic LT-HSCs. In serum/cytokine-free co-cultures, ECs through direct cellular contact, stimulated incremental expansion of repopulating CD34−Flt3−cKit+Lineage−Sca1+ LT-HSCs, which retained their self-renewal ability, as determined by single cell and serial transplantation assays. Angiocrine expression of Notch-ligands by ECs promoted proliferation and prevented exhaustion of LT-HSCs derived from wild-type, but not Notch1/Notch2 deficient mice. In transgenic notch-reporter (TNR.Gfp) mice, regenerating TNR.Gfp+ LT-HSCs were detected in cellular contact with sinusoidal ECs and interfering with angiocrine, but not perfusion function, of SECs impaired repopulation of TNR.Gfp+ LT-HSCs. ECs establish an instructive vascular niche for clinical scale expansion of LT-HSCs and a cellular platform to identify stem cell-active trophogens.
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) derived from cord blood (CB), bone marrow (BM), or mobilized peripheral blood (PBSC) can differentiate into multiple lineages such as lymphoid, myeloid, erythroid cells and platelets. The local microenvironment is critical to the differentiation of HSCs and to the preservation of their phenotype in vivo. This microenvironment comprises a physical support supplied by the organ matrix as well as tissue specific cytokines, chemokines and growth factors. We investigated the effects of acellular bovine bone marrow extracts (BME) on HSC in vitro and in vivo. We observed a significant increase in the number of myeloid and erythroid colonies in CB mononuclear cells (MNC) or CB CD34+ cells cultured in methylcellulose media supplemented with BME. Similarly, in xeno-transplantation experiments, pretreatment with BME during ex-vivo culture of HSCs induced a significant increase in HSC engraftment in vivo. Indeed, we observed both an increase in the number of differentiated myeloid, lymphoid and erythroid cells and an acceleration of engraftment. These results were obtained using CB MNCs, BM MNCs or CD34+ cells, transplanted in immuno-compromised mice (NOD/SCID or NSG). These findings establish the basis for exploring the use of BME in the expansion of CB HSC prior to HSC Transplantation. This study stresses the importance of the mechanical structure and soluble mediators present in the surrounding niche for the proper activity and differentiation of stem cells.
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are thought to reside in discrete niches through stable adhesion, yet previous studies have suggested that host HSCs can be replaced by transplanted donor HSCs, even in the absence of cytoreductive conditioning. To explain this apparent paradox, we calculated, through cell surface phenotyping and transplantation of unfractionated blood, that ∼1–5% of the total pool of HSCs enters into the circulation each day. Bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) feeding experiments demonstrated that HSCs in the peripheral blood incorporate BrdU at the same rate as do HSCs in the bone marrow, suggesting that egress from the bone marrow to the blood can occur without cell division and can leave behind vacant HSC niches. Consistent with this, repetitive daily transplantations of small numbers of HSCs administered as new niches became available over the course of 7 d led to significantly higher levels of engraftment than did large, single-bolus transplantations of the same total number of HSCs. These data provide insight as to how HSC replacement can occur despite the residence of endogenous HSCs in niches, and suggest therapeutic interventions that capitalize upon physiological HSC egress.
How hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) respond to inflammatory signals during infections is not well understood. Our studies have used a murine model of ehrlichiosis, an emerging tick-born disease, to address how infection impacts hematopoietic function. Infection of C57BL/6 mice with the intracellular bacterium, Ehrlichia muris, results in anemia and thrombocytopenia, similar to what is observed in human ehrlichiosis patients. In the mouse, infection promotes myelopoiesis, a process that is critically dependent on interferon gamma (IFNγ) signaling. In the present study, we demonstrate that E. muris infection also drives the transient proliferation and expansion of bone marrow Lin-negative Sca-1+ cKit+ (LSK) cells, a population of progenitor cells that contains HSCs. Expansion of the LSK population in the bone marrow was associated with a loss of dormant, long-term repopulating HSCs, reduced engraftment, and a bias towards myeloid lineage differentiation within that population. The reduced engraftment and myeloid bias of the infection-induced LSK cells was transient, and was most pronounced on day 8 post-infection. The infection-induced changes were accompanied by an expansion of more differentiated multipotent progenitor cells, and required IFNγ signaling. Thus, in response to inflammatory signals elicited during acute infection, HSCs can undergo a rapid, IFNγ-dependent, transient shift from dormancy to activity, ostensibly, to provide the host with additional or better-armed innate cells for host defense. Similar changes in hematopoietic function likely underlie many different infections of public health importance.
Both Tnfrsf1a and Tnfrsf1b are needed for the suppressive effect of TNF on murine HSC activity in vitro and in vivo.
Whereas maintenance of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) is a requisite for life, uncontrolled expansion of HSCs might enhance the propensity for leukemic transformation. Accordingly, HSC numbers are tightly regulated. The identification of physical cellular HSC niches has underscored the importance of extrinsic regulators of HSC homeostasis. However, whereas extrinsic positive regulators of HSCs have been identified, opposing extrinsic repressors of HSC expansion in vivo have yet to be described. Like many other acute and chronic inflammatory diseases, bone marrow (BM) failure syndromes are associated with tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF) overexpression. However, the in vivo relevance of TNF in the regulation of HSCs has remained unclear. Of considerable relevance for normal hematopoiesis and in particular BM failure syndromes, we herein demonstrate that TNF is a cell-extrinsic and potent endogenous suppressor of normal HSC activity in vivo in mice. These effects of TNF involve two distinct TNF receptors.
Sall4 is a key factor for the maintenance of pluripotency and self-renewal of embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Our previous studies have shown that Sall4 is a robust stimulator for human hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell (HSC/HPC) expansion. The purpose of the current study is to further evaluate how Sall4 may affect HSC/HPC activities in a murine system.
Lentiviral vectors expressing Sall4A or Sall4B isoform were used to transduce mouse bone marrow Lin-/Sca1+/c-Kit+ (LSK) cells and HSC/HPC self-renewal and differentiation were evaluated.
Forced expression of Sall4 isoforms led to sustained ex vivo proliferation of LSK cells. In addition, Sall4 expanded HSC/HPCs exhibited increased in vivo repopulating abilities after bone marrow transplantation. These activities were associated with dramatic upregulation of multiple HSC/HPC regulatory genes including HoxB4, Notch1, Bmi1, Runx1, Meis1 and Nf-ya. Consistently, downregulation of endogenous Sall4 expression led to reduced LSK cell proliferation and accelerated cell differentiation. Moreover, in myeloid progenitor cells (32D), overexpression of Sall4 isoforms inhibited granulocytic differentiation and permitted expansion of undifferentiated cells with defined cytokines, consistent with the known functions of Sall4 in the ES cell system.
Sall4 is a potent regulator for HSC/HPC self-renewal, likely by increasing self-renewal activity and inhibiting differentiation. Our work provides further support that Sall4 manipulation may be a new model for expanding clinically transplantable stem cells.
Mouse Hematopoietic Stem Cell; Transplantation; Differentiation
Somatic mutation of ten-eleven translocation 2 (TET2) gene is frequently found in human myeloid malignancies. Recent reports showed that loss of Tet2 led to pleiotropic hematopoietic abnormalities including increased competitive repopulating capacity of bone marrow (BM) HSCs and myeloid transformation. However, precise impact of Tet2 loss on the function of fetal liver (FL) HSCs has not been examined. Here we show that disruption of Tet2 results in the expansion of Lin−Sca-1+c-Kit+ (LSK) cells in FL. Furthermore, Tet2 loss led to enhanced self-renewal and long-term repopulating capacity of FL-HSCs in in vivo serial transplantation assay. Disruption of Tet2 in FL also led to altered differentiation of mature blood cells, expansion of common myeloid progenitors and increased resistance for hematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) to differentiation stimuli in vitro. These results demonstrate that Tet2 plays a critical role in homeostasis of HSCs and HPCs not only in the BM, but also in FL.
Previously, we reported that the spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC), which is coupled in somatic cells, is uncoupled from apoptosis-initiation in mouse and human embryonic stem cells (ESCs). This condition allows ESCs to tolerate and proliferate as polyploidy/aneuploid cells. Proper function of the SAC is vital to prevent polyploidy/aneuploidy during ex vivo hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) expansion. Here we address, for the first time, whether HSCs are more like ESCs or somatic cells with respect to SAC–apoptosis coupling. Using multi-parametric permeablized cell flow-cytometric analysis to identify and analyze the mouse sca 1+/c-kit+/lin− (LSK) population, we found the mitotic spindle checkpoint to be functional in primary murine LSK cells, a population enriched in primitive hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells, after prolonged activation of the SAC by microtubule-depolymerizing agents such as nocodazole. HSCs can efficiently initiate apoptosis after activation of the SAC in LSK cells as indicated by increased hypodiploidy and increased levels of activated caspase 3, suggesting that HSCs behave more like somatic cells instead of ESCs with respect to this important cell cycle checkpoint. We conclude that mouse HSCs are not subject to the same kinds of chromosomal instability as are ESCs, knowledge that might aid in optimizing in vitro culture and expansion of human bone marrow or cord blood HSC for clinical applications.
The cellular ontogeny of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) remains poorly understood because their isolation from and their identification in early developing small embryos are difficult. We attempted to dissect early developmental stages of HSCs using an in vitro mouse embryonic stem cell (ESC) differentiation system combined with inducible HOXB4 expression. Here we report the identification of pre-HSCs and an embryonic type of HSCs (embryonic HSCs) as intermediate cells between ESCs and HSCs. Both pre-HSCs and embryonic HSCs were isolated by their c-Kit+CD41+CD45− phenotype. Pre-HSCs did not engraft in irradiated adult mice. After co-culture with OP9 stromal cells and conditional expression of HOXB4, pre-HSCs gave rise to embryonic HSCs capable of engraftment and long-term reconstitution in irradiated adult mice. Blast colony assays revealed that most hemangioblast activity was detected apart from the pre-HSC population, implying the early divergence of pre-HSCs from hemangioblasts. Gene expression profiling suggests that a particular set of transcripts closely associated with adult HSCs is involved in the transition of pre-HSC to embryonic HSCs. We propose an HSC developmental model in which pre-HSCs and embryonic HSCs sequentially give rise to adult types of HSCs in a stepwise manner.
Previously we reported that the spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC), which is coupled in somatic cells, is uncoupled from apoptosis-initiation in mouse and human ESCs. This condition allows ESCs to tolerate and proliferate as polyploidy/aneuploid cells. Proper function of the SAC is vital to prevent polyploidy/aneuploidy during ex-vivo HSC expansion. Here we address, for the first time, whether hematopoietic stem cells are more like ESC or somatic cells with respect to SAC-apoptosis coupling. Using multiparametric permeablized cell flow-cytometric analysis to identify and analyze the mouse sca 1+/c-kit+/lin− (LSK) population, we found the mitotic spindle checkpoint to be functional in primary murine LSK cells, a population enriched in primitive hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells, after prolonged activation of the SAC by microtubule-depolymerizing agents such as nocodazole. HSCs can efficiently initiate apoptosis after activation of the SAC in LSK cells as indicated by increased hypopdiploidy and increased levels of activated caspase-3 suggesting that HSCs behave more like somatic cells instead of ESCs with respect to this important cell cycle checkpoint. We conclude that mouse HSCs are not subject to the same kinds of chromosomal-instability as are ESCs, knowledge that might aid in optimizing in-vitro culture and expansion of human bone marrow or cord blood HSC for clinical applications.
Hematopoietic stem cell; cell cycle; cell cycle checkpoint; flow cytometry
The mechanism that regulates self-renewal and differentiation of hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) is a central question in stem cell biology that might ultimately lead to reliable protocols for in vitro expansion of HSC. Cellular fate is governed by cell-cell interaction with the microenvironment in the bone marrow, the stem cell niche. Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) are precursors of the cellular components, and they secrete extracellular matrix proteins of the bone marrow stroma. Therefore, MSC feeder layer might provide a suitable in vitro model system for the stem cell niche. In vitro assays demonstrate that MSC maintain the stem cell function of HSC and that MSC from bone marrow have a higher hematopoiesis supportive activity than MSC from adipose tissue. Co-cultivation with MSC might pave the way for expansion of long-term repopulating HSC, and various clinical trials indicate that co-transplantation of HSC and MSC might enhance engraftment. Thus, MSC are promising tools to elucidate the underlying mechanism of the cellular microenvironment. The large variety of preparative protocols for isolation and cultivation of MSC affects their stromal activity. Standardized isolation methods and molecular characterization of MSC are of utmost importance for reproducible isolation of hematopoiesis supportive stromal cells and for their potential clinical application.
Mesenchymal stem cell; Culture conditions; Microenvironment; Differentiation; Hematopoietic stem cells; Cell-cell interaction
Purpose: This paper reviews and reassesses the internationally accepted niches or ‘targets’ in bone marrow that are sensitive to the induction of leukaemia and primary bone cancer by radiation.
Conclusions: The hypoxic conditions of the 10 μm thick endosteal/osteoblastic niche where preleukemic stem cells and hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) reside provides a radioprotective microenvironment that is 2-to 3-fold less radiosensitive than vascular niches. This supports partitioning the whole marrow target between the low haematological cancer risk of irradiating HSC in the endosteum and the vascular niches within central marrow. There is a greater risk of induced bone cancer when irradiating a 50 μm thick peripheral marrow adjacent to the remodelling/reforming portion of the trabecular bone surface, rather than marrow next to the quiescent bone surface. This choice of partitioned bone cancer target is substantiated by the greater radiosensitivity of: (i) Bone with high remodelling rates, (ii) the young, (iii) individuals with hypermetabolic benign diseases of bone, and (iv) the epidemiology of alpha-emitting exposures. Evidence is given to show that the absence of excess bone-cancer in atomic-bomb survivors may be partially related to the extremely low prevalence among Japanese of Paget's disease of bone. Radiation-induced fibrosis and the wound healing response may be implicated in not only radiogenic bone cancers but also leukaemia. A novel biological mechanism for adaptive response, and possibility of dynamic targets, is advocated whereby stem cells migrate from vascular niches to stress-mitigated, hypoxic niches.
cancer predisposition; bone; stem cells; radiation-induced tumours
Endothelial cells (ECs), which are a major component of blood vessels, have been reported to develop in adulthood from hematopoietic cell populations, especially those of the monocyte lineage. Here we show that mural cells (MCs), another component of blood vessels, develop physiologically during embryogenesis from a hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) population, based on the in vitro culture of HSCs and histological examination of acute myeloid leukemia 1 mutant embryos, which lack HSCs. As in the embryo, HSCs in adult bone marrow differentiate into CD45+CD11b+ cells before differentiating into MCs. Moreover, CD45+CD11b+ cells are composed of two populations, CD11bhigh and CD11blow cells, both of which can differentiate into MCs as well as ECs. Interestingly, in a murine ischemia model, MCs and ECs derived from the CD11blow population had a long-term potential to contribute to the formation of newly developed blood vessels in vivo compared with the CD11high population, which could not. Moreover, injection of the CD11bhigh population induced leaky blood vessels, but the CD11blow population did not. With respect to the permeability of vessels, we found that angiopoietin 1, which is a ligand for Tie2 receptor tyrosine kinase expressed on ECs and is suggested to induce cell adhesion between ECs and MCs, is produced by the CD11blow population and plays a critical role in the formation of nonleaky vessels. These observations suggested that the CD11low cell population serves as a good source of cells for in vivo blood vessel regeneration.
The regulated lysosomal degradation pathway of autophagy prevents cellular damage and thus protects from malignant transformation. Autophagy is also required for the maturation of various hematopoietic lineages, namely the erythroid and lymphoid ones, yet its role in adult hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) remained unexplored. While normal HSCs sustain life-long hematopoiesis, malignant transformation of HSCs or early progenitors leads to leukemia. Mechanisms protecting HSCs from cellular damage are therefore essential to prevent hematopoietic malignancies. By conditionally deleting the essential autophagy gene Atg7 in the hematopoietic system, we found that autophagy is required for the maintenance of true HSCs and therefore also of downstream hematopoietic progenitors. Loss of autophagy in HSCs leads to the expansion of a progenitor cell population in the bone marrow, giving rise to a severe, invasive myeloproliferation, which strongly resembles human acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
acute myeloid leukemia; autophagy; myeloproliferation; hematopoietic stem cells; mitophagy; reactive oxygen species; hematopoietic progenitors; Atg7; hematopoietic malignancy
The quiescence of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) is critical for preserving a lifelong steady pool of HSCs to sustain the highly regenerative hematopoietic system. It is thought that specialized niches in which HSCs reside control the balance between HSC quiescence and self-renewal, yet little is known about the extrinsic signals provided by the niche and how these niche signals regulate such a balance. We report that CXCL12 produced by bone marrow (BM) stromal cells is not only the major chemoattractant for HSCs but also a regulatory factor that controls the quiescence of primitive hematopoietic cells. Addition of CXCL12 into the culture inhibits entry of primitive hematopoietic cells into the cell cycle, and inactivation of its receptor CXCR4 in HSCs causes excessive HSC proliferation. Notably, the hyperproliferative Cxcr4−/− HSCs are able to maintain a stable stem cell compartment and sustain hematopoiesis. Thus, we propose that CXCR4/CXCL12 signaling is essential to confine HSCs in the proper niche and controls their proliferation.
According to the “osteoblastic niche” model, hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are maintained by N-cadherin-mediated homophilic adhesion to osteoblasts at the bone marrow endosteum. In contrast to this model, we cannot detect N-cadherin expression by HSCs and most HSCs do not localize to the endosteal surface. It has nonetheless been suggested that HSCs express low levels of N-cadherin that regulate HSC maintenance. To test this we conditionally deleted N-cadherin from HSCs and other hematopoietic cells in adult Mx-1-Cre+N-cadherinfl/− mice. N-cadherin deficiency had no detectable effect on HSC maintenance or hematopoiesis. N-cadherin deficiency did not affect bone marrow cellularity or lineage composition, the numbers of colony-forming progenitors, the frequency of HSCs, the ability of HSCs to sustain hematopoiesis over time, or their ability to reconstitute irradiated mice in primary or secondary transplants. Loss of N-cadherin does not lead to HSC depletion. N-cadherin expression by HSCs is not necessary for niche function.
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) reside in bone marrow niches and give rise to hematopoietic precursor cells (HPCs). These have more restricted lineage potential and eventually differentiate into specific blood cell types. Bone marrow also contains mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs), which present multilineage differentiation potential toward mesodermal cell types. In bone marrow niches, stem cell interaction with the extracellular matrix is mediated by integrin receptors. Ion channels regulate cell proliferation and differentiation by controlling intracellular Ca2+, cell volume, release of growth factors, and so forth. Although little evidence is available about the ion channel roles in true HSCs, increasing information is available about HPCs and MSCs, which present a complex pattern of K+ channel expression. K+ channels cooperate with Ca2+ and Cl− channels in regulating calcium entry and cell volume during mitosis. Other K+ channels modulate the integrin-dependent interaction between leukemic progenitor cells and the niche stroma. These channels can also regulate leukemia cell interaction with MSCs, which also involves integrin receptors and affects the MSC-mediated protection from chemotherapy. Ligand-gated channels are also implicated in these processes. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors regulate cell proliferation and migration in HSCs and MSCs and may be implicated in the harmful effects of smoking.
In vitro replicas of bone marrow can potentially provide a continuous source of blood cells for transplantation and serve as a laboratory model to examine human immune system dysfunctions and drug toxicology. Here we report the development of an in vitro artificial bone marrow based on a 3D scaffold with inverted colloidal crystal (ICC) geometry mimicking the structural topology of actual bone marrow matrix. To facilitate adhesion of cells, scaffolds were coated with a layer of transparent nanocomposite. After seeding with hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), ICC scaffolds were capable of supporting expansion of CD34+ HSCs with B-lymphocyte differentiation. Three-dimensional organization was shown to be critical for production of B cells and antigen specific-antibodies. Functionality of bone marrow constructs was confirmed by implantation of matrices containing human CD34+ cells onto the backs of severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice with subsequent generation of human immune cells.
Scaffolds; Tissue engineering; Bone marrow; Colloidal crystals; Stem cell