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Stem Cells Dev. 2008 Oct;17(5):1005-16. doi: 10.1089/scd.2007.0248.

Cord blood-derived neurons are originated from CD133+/CD34 stem/progenitor cells in a cell-to-cell contact dependent manner.

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Neurogenèse et Processus Intégratifs dans l'Olfaction, Laboratoire de Neurosciences, Université de Franche-Comté, Besançon, France.


Previous studies described that neurons could be generated in vitro from human umbilical cord blood cells. However, there are few data concerning their origin. Notably, cells generating neurons are not well characterized. The present study deals with the origin of cord blood cells generating neurons and mechanisms allowing the neuronal differentiation. We studied neuronal markers of both total fractions of cord blood and stem/progenitor cord blood cells before and after selections and cultures. We also compared neuronal commitment of cord blood cells to that observed for the neuronal cell line SK-N-BE(2). Before cultures, neuronal markers are found within the total fraction of cord blood cells. In CD133+ stem/progenitor cell fraction only immature neuronal markers are detected. However, CD133+ cells are unable to give rise to neurons in cultures, whereas this is achieved when total fraction of cord blood cells is used. In fact, mature functional neurons can be generated from CD133+ cells only in cell-to-cell close contact with either CD133- fraction or a neurogenic epithelium. Furthermore, since CD133+ fraction is heterogenous, we used several selections to precisely identify the phenotype of cord blood-derived neuronal stem/progenitor cells. Results reveal that only CD34- cells from CD133+ fraction possess neuronal potential. These data show the phenotype of cord blood neuronal stem/progenitor cells and the crucial role of direct cell-to-cell contact to achieve their commitment. Identifying the neuron supporting factors may be beneficial to the use of cord blood neuronal stem/progenitor cells for regenerative medicine.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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