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Blood Cells Mol Dis. 2003 Jan-Feb;30(1):13-21.

Hematopoietic progenitor cells as targets for non-invasive prenatal diagnosis: detection of fetal CD34+ cells and assessment of post-delivery persistence in the maternal circulation.

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Danek Gertner Institute of Human Genetics, Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer 52621, Israel.


Culture expansion of fetal cells from the maternal circulation will provide an increased number of cells for non-invasive prenatal diagnosis. Hematopoietic CD34+ cells are potential candidates for this application. More information is needed regarding the frequency of these cells and the phenomenon of post-delivery persistence in the maternal circulation. In this study we assessed the number of fetal CD34+ cells in the maternal circulation, the effect of culture expansion on the number of fetal cells and the persistence of fetal CD34+ cells from previous pregnancies. Fetal cells were identified by the presence of Y-chromosome sequences detected by FISH and nested PCR. Fetal CD34+ cells were detected in all samples from women carrying a male fetus. A low number of residual fetal cells from previous pregnancies was detected (1-3 XY cells in 20 ml blood) in less than 1/3 of the samples from both non-pregnant women and those pregnant with a female fetus. Culturing of CD34+ cells resulted in a significant increase in fetal cell numbers. However, the number of fetal cells persisting from previous pregnancies also increased after culture. It is proposed that information derived from CD34+ cells could potentially support data derived from other cell types for more accurate non-invasive prenatal diagnosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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