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Stem Cells. 1998;16 Suppl 1:51-73.

Unilineage hematopoietic differentiation in bulk and single cell culture.

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Department of Medicine, Eberhard-Karls University Tübingen, Germany.


The rarity of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSCs, HPCs) has hampered the analysis of cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying early hematopoiesis. Methodology for HPC purification has partially offset this limitation. A further hurdle has been represented by the heterogeneity of the analyzed HPC/precursor populations: recently, development of unilineage HPC differentiation cultures has provided homogeneous populations of hematopoietic cells, particularly in the early differentiation state, i.e., populations pertaining to a single lineage and a restricted stage of differentiation/maturation, but sufficiently large for cellular/molecular analysis. This report focuses on the development and characterization of the unilineage HPC differentiation culture systems. A section is devoted to selected cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying hematopoiesis, which have been investigated by the HPC unilineage culture approach. Finally, recent advances in the development of HPC unilineage cultures at single cell level are discussed.

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