Correlation of circulating CD133+ progenitor subclasses with a mild phenotype in duchenne muscular dystrophy patients

Chiara Marchesi, Marzia Belicchi, Mirella Meregalli, Andrea Farini, Alessandra Cattaneo, Daniele Parolini, Manuela Gavina, Laura Porretti, Maria Grazia D'Angelo, Nereo Bresolin, Giulio Cossu, Yvan Torrente

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Various prognostic serum and cellular markers have been identified for many diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases and tumor pathologies. Here we assessed whether the levels of certain stem cells may predict the progression of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Methods and Findings: The levels of several subpopulations of circulating stem cells expressing the CD133 antigen were determined by flow cytometry in 70 DMD patients. The correlation between the levels and clinical status was assessed by statistical analysis. The median (±SD) age of the population was 10.66±3.81 (range 3 to 20 years). The levels of CD133+CXCR4+CD34- stem cells were significantly higher in DMD patients compared to healthy controls (mean±standard deviation: 17.38±1.38 vs 11.0±1.70; P = 0.03) with a tendency towards decreased levels in older patients. Moreover, the levels of this subpopulation of cells correlated with the clinical condition. In a subgroup of 19 DMD patients after 24 months of follow-up, increased levels of CD133+CXCR4+CD34- cells was shown to be associated with a phenotype characterised by slower disease progression. The circulating CD133+CXCR4+CD34- cells in patients from different ages did not exhibit significant differences in their myogenic and endothelial in vitro differentiation capacity. Conclusions: Our results suggest that levels of CD133+CXCR4+CD34- could function as a new prognostic clinical marker for the progression of DMD.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2218
JournalPLoS One
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 21 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Correlation of circulating CD133+ progenitor subclasses with a mild phenotype in duchenne muscular dystrophy patients'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this