We attempted to determine the frequency of normal hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) and contaminating leukemic cells in mobilized peripheral blood (MPB) collected from chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients, intolerant of α- interferon or with interferon-resistant disease. A total of 14 MPB samples, six from patients in chronic phase (CP) and eight from patients in accelerated phase or blast crisis (AP/BC) were studied. Cytogenetic analysis of MPB collected from AP/BC patients showed that 100% of the cells were Ph+, whereas cells from four of five CP MPB were Ph-. By contrast, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis of CP MPB showed a mean frequency of 14.7% Ph+ cells, while AP/BC MPB contained 39.2% Ph+ cells. In an attempt to purify normal HSC, subpopulations of the MPB CD34+ cells were isolated based on expression of the Thy-1 antigen (CDw90). The mean Ph+ cell frequency as determined by FISH within the CD34+Thy-1+ Lin- and CD34+Thy- 1-Lin- populations from CP patients was 19.2% and 33.9%, respectively. In the AP/BC patients, levels of residual leukemic cells were significantly greater with mean Ph+ cell frequencies of 59.2% and 72.7% for the CD34+Thy- 1+Lin- and CD34+Thy-1-Lin- fractions, respectively. The frequency of cobblestone area forming cells (CAFC) was used as a means of quantitating the numbers of functional HSC within these cell subpopulations. The mean CAFC frequency was 1 of 19 for the CD34+Thy-1+Lin- cells as compared with 1 of 133 for the Thy-1- fraction indicating a higher frequency of primitive progenitor cells in the Thy-1+ subpopulation. CD34+ cell subsets from two patients were also injected into SCID-hu bone assays to determine the in vivo behavior of these cell populations. After 8 weeks, multilineage donor engraftment was observed in these grafts. FISH analysis of the donor cells within the grafts showed that 55.3% and 60.0% of the cells were Ph+. We conclude that unfractionated MPB from this patient population is not leukemia-free and that the CD34+Thy-1+Lin- cell subpopulation, although predominantly enriched for normal HSC, still contains substantial numbers of residual leukemic cells.
|Number of pages||10|
|Publication status||Published - May 15 1996|
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