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Exp Hematol. 1991 Nov;19(10):1017-24.

The role of monocyte-derived hemopoietic growth factors in the regulation of myeloproliferation in juvenile chronic myelogenous leukemia.

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Department of Medicine, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham.


Juvenile chronic myelogenous leukemia (JCML) is a rare pediatric malignancy characterized by marked hepatosplenomegaly, leukocytosis with prominent monocytosis, elevated fetal hemoglobin, no Philadelphia chromosome, and generally a poor prognosis. In vitro, JCML peripheral blood granulocyte-macrophage progenitors (granulocyte-macrophage colony-forming units, CFU-GM) demonstrate the unique characteristic of "spontaneous" proliferation at very low cell densities in the absence of exogenous growth factors. The "spontaneous" CFU-GM proliferation can be abolished by prior adherent cell (monocyte) depletion, suggesting a paracrine mode of cellular proliferation. Although previous studies using a [3H]thymidine ([3H]TdR) incorporation assay suggested an important role for granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) in JCML, many non-growth factor-related reasons for [3H]TdR incorporation and the relatively low level of inhibition of [3H]TdR uptake left those conclusions open to question. Therefore, we performed clonal CFU-GM assays, which more specifically reflect cytokine effects on CFU-GM, using JCML peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMNC) and neutralizing antibodies against GM-CSF, granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF), macrophage colony-stimulating (M-CSF), interleukin 3 (IL-3), interleukin 1 alpha (IL-1 alpha), interleukin 1 beta (IL-1 beta), interleukin 4 (IL-4), interleukin 6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF alpha), and interferon gamma (IFN gamma). Cultures containing anti-GM-CSF alone inhibited "spontaneous" JCML CFU-GM by 87% +/- 9% (mean +/- standard error of the mean [SEM]). No other anti-cytokine antibody produced a significant inhibition of CFU-GM growth. Various combinations of antibodies, excluding anti-GM-CSF, failed to demonstrate any synergistic inhibitory effects upon CFU-GM. Because this apparent paracrine cellular stimulation could be due to excessive cytokine production, by monocytes or other accessory cells, we examined cytokine levels in conditioned media from various JCML cell populations using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs). Monocytes from only a minority of JCML patients produced higher than normal quantities of GM-CSF, G-CSF, IL-1 beta, IL-6, and/or TNF alpha, but no obvious pattern could be discerned. Further, only 7 of 15 JCML monocyte-conditioned media (MCM) had elevated GM-CSF, and 6 of 15 JCML patients had normal levels of all nine cytokines tested. The monocyte depletion experiments and the inhibition experiments with anti-cytokine antibodies taken together demonstrate clearly that the "spontaneous" growth of JCML CFU-GM in vitro critically depends on at least one monocyte-derived growth factor, GM-CSF.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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