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Eur J Haematol. 2001 Oct;67(4):267-78.

Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) in human acute myelogenous leukemia: PDGF receptor expression, endogenous PDGF release and responsiveness to exogenous PDGF isoforms by in vitro cultured acute myelogenous leukemia blasts.

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Institute of Medicine, University of Bergen, and Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Haukeland University Hospital, 5021 Bergen, Norway.


We investigated effects of Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and Platelet factor 4 (PF-4) on the functional characteristics of native, human acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) blasts. AML blast expression of the PDGF-receptor alpha-chain was detected for a subset of patients (45%), whereas PDGF-receptor beta-chain expression was detected for most patients (90%). Constitutive AML blast release of the PDGF-AB isoform (the major form also derived from normal platelets) was detected for 43% of patients, whereas PDGF-BB release was not detected for any patient. The PDGF isoforms AA, AB and BB had dose-dependent and divergent effects on spontaneous and cytokine-dependent AML blast proliferation, whereas for constitutive cytokine secretion (IL-1beta, IL-6, TNF-alpha) inhibitory effects were rare and all three isoforms usually had no effect or enhanced the constitutive secretion. The PDGF effects were caused by a direct effect on the AML blasts and were not dependent on the presence of serum. The PDGF effects could also be detected after in vitro culture of AML cells in the presence of IL-4+ granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor. PF-4 had divergent effects on proliferation and cytokine secretion by native AML blasts. Our results suggest that exogenous (e.g. platelet-secreted) PDGF and PF-4 can function as regulators of leukemic hematopoiesis and possibly also modulate the function of residual AML cells in peripheral blood stem cell grafts. On the other hand, endogenous release of PDGF-AB by native blasts may modulate the function of normal cells in the bone marrow microenvironment (e.g. bone marrow stromal cells).

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