Circulating hematopoietic progenitor cells. Biological aspects and clinical applications

Marco Danova, Camillo Porta, Silvia Ferrari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Hematopoietic progenitor cells set up a very heterogeneous cellular compartment, comprising many different stages of differentiation from extremely primitive elements to more mature cells committed to differentiation. Early hematopoietic cells are identified by a monoclonal antibody binding a cell-surface molecule, designated as CD34+. These cells can be mobilized into the peripheral blood by cytotoxic drugs, cytokines or the combination of both, allowing their collection by apheresis and used to facilitate hematopoietic recovery after myeloablative chemotherapy for patients with cancer. These cells can be subset and quantified by flow cytometry; this technique is also useful to determine in a clinical setting the appropriate timing for the apheresis, as well as to monitor the CD34+ cell yield within the apheretic product. To date, the autotransplantation of peripheral blood-derived progenitor cells is playing an important role in the medical treatment of leukemias, lymphomas and some solid turners. In this setting, an advantage of progenitor cells mobilized into the blood over their bone marrow counterpart is the increased speed of hematopoietic reconstitution after myeloablative therapy. The future use of CPCs is related to the development of ex vivo expansion strategies aimed at increasing their number as well as to produce large numbers of a particular cell type for a precise application such as use as a vehicle for gene therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-112
Number of pages6
JournalMinerva Biotecnologica
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1999


  • Autologous blood transplantation
  • Cd34 antigens
  • Hematopoietic stem cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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