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Proliferation of erythroid-committed cells in the absence of erythropoietin

  • Lois F. O'Grady
    Correspondence
    Reprint requests: Lois O'Grady, M.D., Assistant Professor of Medicine, School of Medicine, Davis, Calif. 95616.
    Affiliations
    From the Section of Hematology, Department of Internal Medicine, University of California School of Medicine Davis, Calif. U.S.A.
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  • Jerry P. Lewis
    Affiliations
    From the Section of Hematology, Department of Internal Medicine, University of California School of Medicine Davis, Calif. U.S.A.
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      Abstract

      Transplanted hematopoietic stem cells seed in the spleen of lethally irradiated mice where they differentiate and mature into discrete colonies of hematopoietic tissue. In plethoric mice no erythroid colonies are formed. Those cells which usually supply the erythron apparently become committed to the erythroid series and proliferate but fail to mature into recognizable erythroid elements unless exogenous erythropoietin is administered. The extent and limits of the proliferation were investigated by transplanting bone marrow cells into plethoric mice, allowing the cells to multiply for 4 to 7 days in the absence of erythropoietin, and then stimulating their maturation with exogenous erythropoietin. Since the duration of erythropoietin stimulation was constant, variation in the size of mature erythroid colonies presumably reflects variation of the size of the colonies of erythroid-committed cells before erythropoietin was administered. The colonies of cells, unrecognizable but apparently committed to the erythron, increased in size through the seventh day post transplantation, remained constant in size for 24 hours, and then appeared to decrease. It would appear that these cells were able to undergo several divisions in the absence of erythropoietin, but their growth potential is under some constraint and limitation.
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