Engineered humanized bone organs maintain human hematopoiesis in vivo

Experimental hematology, 2018.

Fritsch K, Pigeot S, Bourgine PE, Feng X, Schroeder T, Martin I, Manz MG, Takizawa H


Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are maintained in a specialized bone marrow (BM) environment, the so-called HSC niche, that provides pivotal factors for their maintenance. Although the cellular and molecular components of the mouse BM HSC niche have been extensively studied using genetically modified animals, relatively little is known about the counterpart human BM niche components. We previously illustrated, with a developmental tissue engineering approach, that human adult BM-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) can develop into human bone organs (so-called ossicles) through endochondral ossification in vivo and that these human ossicles are able to maintainfunctional mouse HSCs. We here report that human ossicles in immunodeficient mice maintain human immature and mature hematopoiesisin vivo. Moreover, a higher percentage of human stem and progenitor cells are kept in quiescence in human ossicles as compared with mouse BM. These findings indicate that the human MSC-derived ossicles function as a hematopoietic niche and may potentially serve as a re-engineerable platform to study normal and diseased human hematopoiesis in a physiologically optimized environment.

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