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NUP98-HOXA10hd-Expanded Hematopoietic Stem Cells Efficiently Reconstitute Bone Marrow of Mismatched Recipients and Induce Tolerance

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Gene therapy as well as methods capable of returning cells to a pluripotent state (iPS) have enabled the correction of genetic deficiencies in syngenic adult progenitors, reducing the need for immunosuppression in cell therapy approaches. However, in diseases involving mutations that lead to the complete lack of a protein, such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the main immunogens leading to rejection of transplanted cells are the therapeutic proteins themselves. In these cases even iPS cells would not circumvent the need for immunosuppression, and alternative strategies must be developed. One such potential strategy seeks to induce immune tolerance using hematopoietic stem cells originated from the same donor or iPS line from which the therapeutic progenitors are derived. However, donor hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are available in limiting numbers and embryonic stem (ES) cell-derived HSCs engraft poorly in adults. While these limitations have been circumvented by ectopic expression of HOXB4, overexpression of this protein is associated with inefficient lymphoid reconstitution. Here we show that adult HSCs expanded with a NUP98- HOXA10hd fusion protein sustain long-term engraftment in immunologically mismatched recipients and generate normal numbers of lymphoid cells. In addition, NUP98-HOXA10hd-expanded cells induce functional immune tolerance to a subsequent transplant of myogenic progenitors immunologically matched with the transplanted HSCs.
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Keywords: Chimerism; HOXA10; Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) and myoblast transplantation; Tolerance

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Medicine, The Biomedical Research Centre, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada

Publication date: 01 July 2011

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