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Exp Hematol. 2002 May;30(5):481-7.

Quantitative assessment of gene expression in highly purified hematopoietic cells using real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction.

Author information

1
Department of Hematology and Central Hematology Laboratory, University Medical Center Nijmegen, Nijmegen, The Netherlands. H.raaijmakers@chl.azn.nl

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Quantitative assessment of gene expression in stem cells is essential for understanding the molecular events underlying normal and malignant hematopoiesis. The aim of the present study was to develop a method for precise quantitation of gene expression in small subsets of highly purified CD34(+)CD38(-) stem cell populations.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Real-time quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was used to quantitate housekeeping and drug resistance gene expression in cDNA obtained from 300 CD34(+)CD38(-) cells without cDNA amplification or nested PCR techniques.

RESULTS:

Validation experiments in cell lines showed efficient, representative and reproducible gene amplification using 300-cell real-time quantitative RT-PCR. Sensitivity was confirmed in dilutional experiments and by detection of the low-copy gene PBGD. GAPDH was found to be a useful reference gene in normal and leukemic CD34(+)CD38(-) cells. In contrast, 18S rRNA content varied 100-fold to 1000-fold in these populations. Moreover, expression of 18S rRNA was significantly lower in leukemic CD34(+)CD38(+) cells compared to normal CD34(+)CD38(+) cells (p = 0.002). Expression of MDR-1 (18-fold, p < 0.0005), MRP-1 (3.8-fold, p < 0.05), and LRP (1.8-fold, NS) was higher in normal CD34(+)CD38(-) compared to CD34(+)CD38(+) cells.

CONCLUSIONS:

Real-time quantitative RT-PCR is a valuable tool for precise quantitation of gene expression in small subsets of hematopoietic cells. Using this method, we showed the inappropriateness of 18S as a reference gene in these progenitors and the down-regulation of drug-resistance-related genes early in hematopoiesis.

PMID:
12031655
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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