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J Exp Med. 2018 Jan 2;215(1):217-232. doi: 10.1084/jem.20171341. Epub 2017 Nov 15.

Geographic clonal tracking in macaques provides insights into HSPC migration and differentiation.

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Hematology Branch, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD.
Vaccine Research Center, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD.
Department of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA.
Institute of hematology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China.


The geographic distribution of hematopoiesis at a clonal level is of interest in understanding how hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) and their progeny interact with bone marrow (BM) niches during regeneration. We tagged rhesus macaque autologous HSPCs with genetic barcodes, allowing clonal tracking over time and space after transplantation. We found marked geographic segregation of CD34+ HSPCs for at least 6 mo posttransplantation, followed by very gradual clonal mixing at different BM sites over subsequent months to years. Clonal mapping was used to document local production of granulocytes, monocytes, B cells, and CD56+ natural killer (NK) cells. In contrast, CD16+CD56- NK cells were not produced in the BM, and in fact were clonally distinct from multipotent progenitors producing all other lineages. Most surprisingly, we documented local BM production of CD3+ T cells early after transplantation, using both clonal mapping and intravascular versus tissue-resident T cell staining, suggesting a thymus-independent T cell developmental pathway operating during BM regeneration, perhaps before thymic recovery.

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