Establishment of a normal hematopoietic and leukemia stem cell hierarchy.
ABSTRACT Many types of adult tissues, especially for high turnover tissues such as the blood and intestinal system, stand on a hierarchical tissue-specific stem cell system. Tissue-specific stem cells concurrently have self-renewal capacity and potential to give rise to all types of mature cells in their tissue. The differentiation process of the tissue-specific stem cell is successive restriction of these capacities. The first progeny of tissue-specific stem cells are multipotent progenitors (MPPs) that lose long-term self-renewal capacity yet have full lineage potential. MPPs in turn give rise to oligopotent progenitors, which then commit into lineage-restricted progenitors. This hierarchical system enables a lifelong supply of matured functional cells that generally have a short life span and a relatively high turnover rate. In this chapter, we review our findings and other key experiments that have led to the establishment of the current cellular stem and progenitor hierarchy in the blood-forming systems of mice and humans for both normal and leukemic hematopoiesis. We also review select signaling pathways intrinsic to normal hematopoietic and leukemic stem cell populations as well our recent findings elucidating the possible origin of the leukemia stem cell.
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ABSTRACT: Generating engraftable human haematopoietic cells from autologous tissues is a potential route to new therapies for blood diseases. However, directed differentiation of pluripotent stem cells yields haematopoietic cells that engraft poorly. Here, we have devised a method to phenocopy the vascular-niche microenvironment of haemogenic cells, thereby enabling reprogramming of human endothelial cells into engraftable haematopoietic cells without transition through a pluripotent intermediate. Highly purified non-haemogenic human umbilical vein endothelial cells or adult dermal microvascular endothelial cells were transduced with the transcription factors FOSB, GFI1, RUNX1 and SPI1 (hereafter referred to as FGRS), and then propagated on serum-free instructive vascular niche monolayers to induce outgrowth of haematopoietic colonies containing cells with functional and immunophenotypic features of multipotent progenitor cells (MPPs). These endothelial cells that have been reprogrammed into human MPPs (rEC-hMPPs) acquire colony-forming-cell potential and durably engraft into immune-deficient mice after primary and secondary transplantation, producing long-term rEC-hMPP-derived myeloid (granulocytic/monocytic, erythroid, megakaryocytic) and lymphoid (natural killer and B cell) progenies. Conditional expression of FGRS transgenes, combined with vascular induction, activates endogenous FGRS genes, endowing rEC-hMPPs with a transcriptional and functional profile similar to that of self-renewing MPPs. Our approach underscores the role of inductive cues from the vascular niche in coordinating and sustaining haematopoietic specification and may prove useful for engineering autologous haematopoietic grafts to treat inherited and acquired blood disorders.Nature 07/2014; 511(7509):312-8. · 42.35 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are characterised by their ability to differentiate into any cell type of the body. Accordingly, iPSCs possess immense potential for disease modelling, pharmaceutical screening and autologous cell therapies. The most common source of iPSCs derivation is skin fibroblasts. However, from a clinical point of view, skin fibroblasts may not be ideal, as invasive procedures such as skin biopsies are required for their extraction. Moreover, fibroblasts are highly heterogeneous with a poorly defined developmental pathway, which makes studying reprogramming mechanistics difficult. Granulocytes, on the other hand, are easily obtainable, their developmental pathway has been extensively studied and fluorescence activated cell sorting allows for the isolation of these cells at high purity; thus iPSCs derivation from granulocytes could provide an alternative to fibroblast-derived iPSCs. Previous studies succeeded in producing iPSC colonies from mouse granulocytes but with the use of a mitotically inactivated feeder layer, restricting their use for studying reprogramming mechanistics. As granulocytes display poor survival under culture conditions, we investigated the influence of haematopoietic cytokines to stabilise this cell type in vitro and allow for reprogramming in the absence of a feeder layer. Our results show that treatment with MEF-conditioned media and/or initial exposure to GM-CSF allows for reprogramming of granulocytes under feeder-free conditions. This work can serve as a basis for future work aimed at dissecting the reprogramming mechanism as well as obtaining large numbers of iPSCs from a clinically relevant cell source.Differentiation 07/2014; 87(5). · 2.84 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A detailed understanding of the mechanisms maintaining the hierarchical balance of cell types in haematopoiesis will be important for the therapeutic manipulation of normal and leukaemic cells. Mathematical modelling is expected to make an important contribution to this area, but the iterative development of increasingly accurate models will rely on repeated validation using experimental data of sufficient resolution to distinguish between alternative model scenarios. The multipotent hematopoietic progenitor FDCP-Mix cells maintain a hierarchy from self-renewal to post-mitotic differentiation in vitro and are accessible to detailed analysis. Here, we report the development of a combined mathematical modelling and experimental approach to study the principles underlying heterogeneity in FDCP-Mix cultures. We adapt a single-cell based model of haematopoiesis to the conditions of cell culture and describe an association between proliferative history and phenotype of FDCP-Mix cells. While data derived from population studies are incapable of distinguishing between three mechanistically different model scenarios, statistical analysis of single cell tracking data provides a resolution sufficient to select one of them. This scenario favours differences between granulocytic and monocytic lineage with respect to their proliferative behaviour and death rates as a mechanistic explanation for the observed heterogeneity. Our results demonstrate the power of a combined experimental/modelling approach in which single cell fate analysis is the key to revealing regulatory principles at the cellular level.Experimental Hematology 05/2014; · 2.81 Impact Factor