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PLoS One. 2018 Oct 11;13(10):e0205583. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0205583. eCollection 2018.

Identification of genes which regulate stroma-dependent in vitro hematopoiesis.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore.
Division of Biomedical Science, Research School of Biology, The Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.
Clem Jones Centre for Regenerative Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine, Bond University, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia.


Cultured splenic stroma has been shown to support in vitro hematopoiesis in overlaid bone marrow and spleen progenitors. These co-cultures support longterm production of a novel dendritic-like cell type along with transient production of myeloid cells. They also maintain a progenitor cell population. The splenic stromal lines 5G3 and 3B5 have been identified as a supporter and a non-supporter of hematopoiesis. Based on their gene expression profile, both 5G3 and 3B5 express genes related to hematopoiesis, while 5G3 cells express several unique genes, and show upregulation of some genes over 3B5. Based on gene expression studies, specific inhibitors were tested for capacity to inhibit hematopoiesis in co-cultures. Addition of specific antibodies and small molecule inhibitors identified VCAM1, CXCL12, CSF1 and SPP1 as potential regulators of hematopoiesis, although both are expressed by 5G3 and 3B5. Through inhibition of function, SVEP1 and ALDH1 are also shown here to be deterministic of 5G3 hematopoietic support capacity, since these are uniquely expressed by 5G3 and not 3B5. The achievement of inhibition is notable given the dynamic, longterm nature of co-cultures which involve only small numbers of cells. The alternate plan, to add recombinant soluble factors produced by 5G3 back into 3B5 co-cultures in order to recover in vitro hematopoiesis, proved ineffective. Out of 6 different factors added to 3B5, only IGF2 showed any effect on cell production. The identification of differentially expressed or upregulated genes in 5G3 has provided an insight into potential pathways involved in in vitro hematopoiesis leading to production of dendritic-like cells.

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