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Open Access Effects of Simian Betaretrovirus Serotype 1 (SRV1) Infection on the Differentiation of Hematopoietic Progenitor Cells (CD34+) Derived from Bone Marrow of Rhesus Macaques (Macaca mulatta)

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Peripheral blood cytopenias, particularly persistent anemia and neutropenia, are commonly associated with simian betaretrovirus infection of Asian monkeys of the genus Macaca. The pathogenetic mechanisms underlying these hematologic abnormalities are not well understood. The current study investigated the in vitro tropism of simian betaretrovirus (SRV) for both hematopoietic progenitor (CD34+) and stromal cells obtained from rhesus macaque bone marrow and assessed the effects of infection on hematopoietic progenitor cell differentiation in vitro. After in vitro exposure, SRV proviral DNA could be demonstrated by real-time PCR in cells and the reverse transcriptase assay in supernatants from SRV-exposed progenitor-associated stroma, but not in differentiated colonies derived from SRV-exposed progenitors. Furthermore, in vitro exposure involving cell–cell contact of uninfected CD34+ progenitor cells with SRV-infected stromal cells resulted in a statistically significant reduction in granulocyte–macrophage colony formation in absence of detectable SRV-infection of progenitor cells. Reduction in colony formation occurred in a 'dose-dependent' fashion with increasing contact time. No effects on erythroid lineages and RBC differentiation were noted. Our results suggest that hematologic abnormalities observed during SRV disease (natural or experimental) of rhesus macaques may not result from direct effects of viral infection of progenitor cell populations, but rather be (at least in part) a consequence of SRV infection of supportive bone marrow stroma with secondary effects on differentiation of associated progenitor cells.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Center for Comparative Medicine, California National Primate Research Center, University of California, Davis, California, USA. [email protected] 2: California National Primate Research Center, University of California, Davis, California, USA

Publication date: 2012-02-01

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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