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CD138-negative clonogenic cells are plasma cells but not B cells in some multiple myeloma patients.

Hosen N, et al. Leukemia. 2012.

Abstract

Clonogenic multiple myeloma (MM) cells reportedly lacked expression of plasma cell marker CD138. It was also shown that CD19(+) clonotypic B cells can serve as MM progenitor cells in some patients. However, it is unclear whether CD138-negative clonogenic MM plasma cells are identical to clonotypic CD19(+) B cells. We found that in vitro MM colony-forming cells were enriched in CD138(-)CD19(-)CD38(++) plasma cells, while CD19(+) B cells never formed MM colonies in 16 samples examined in this study. We next used the SCID-rab model, which enables engraftment of human MM in vivo. CD138(-)CD19(-)CD38(++) plasma cells engrafted in this model rapidly propagated MM in 3 out of 9 cases, while no engraftment of CD19(+) B cells was detected. In 4 out of 9 cases, CD138(+) plasma cells propagated MM, although more slowly than CD138(-) cells. Finally, we transplanted CD19(+) B cells from 13 MM patients into NOD/SCID IL2Rγc(-/-) mice, but MM did not develop. These results suggest that at least in some MM patients CD138-negative clonogenic cells are plasma cells rather than B cells, and that MM plasma cells including CD138(-) and CD138(+) cells have the potential to propagate MM clones in vivo in the absence of CD19(+) B cells.

PMID

22430638 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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