Tie2 expressing monocytes in the spleen of patients with primary myelofibrosis

Rita Campanelli, Gabriela Fois, Paolo Catarsi, Valentina Poletto, Laura Villani, Benedetta Gaia Erba, Luigi Maddaluno, Basilio Jemos, Silvia Salmoiraghi, Paola Guglielmelli, Vittorio Abbonante, Christian Andrea Di Buduo, Alessandra Balduini, Alessandra Iurlo, Giovanni Barosi, Vittorio Rosti, Margherita Massa, A. M. Vannucchi, M. Balliu, N. BartalucciC. Bogani, A. Bosi, L. Calabresi, G. Corbizzi Fattori, T. Fanelli, R. Fjerza, F. Gesullo, P. Guglielmelli, C. Mannarelli, L. Merli, A. Pacilli, A. Pancrazzi, C. Paoli, L. Pieri, G. Rotunno, E. Sant'Antonio, G. Barosi, Vittorio Rosti, M. Cazzola, I. Ambaglio, P. Bernasconi, S. Catricalà, C. Elena, E. Fugazza, L. Malcovati, C. Milanesi, D. Pietra, F. Ripamonti, M. Rossi, E. Rumi, AGIMM Investigators

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Primary myelofibrosis (PMF) is a Philadelphia-negative (Ph-) myeloproliferative disorder, showing abnormal CD34+ progenitor cell trafficking, splenomegaly, marrow fibrosis leading to extensive extramedullary haematopoiesis, and abnormal neoangiogenesis in either the bone marrow or the spleen. Monocytes expressing the angiopoietin-2 receptor (Tie2) have been shown to support abnormal angiogenic processes in solid tumors through a paracrine action that takes place in proximity to the vessels. In this study we investigated the frequency of Tie2 expressing monocytes in the spleen tissue samples of patients with PMF, and healthy subjects (CTRLs), and evaluated their possible role in favouring spleen angiogenesis. We show by confocal microscopy that in the spleen tissue of patients with PMF, but not of CTRLs, the most of the CD14+ cells are Tie2+ and are close to vessels; by flow cytometry, we found that Tie2 expressing monocytes were Tie2+CD14lowCD16brightCDL62-CCR2- (TEMs) and their frequency was higher (p = 0.008) in spleen tissue-derived mononuclear cells (MNCs) of patients with PMF than in spleen tissue-derived MNCs from CTRLs undergoing splenectomy for abdominal trauma. By in vitro angiogenesis assay we evidenced that conditioned medium of immunomagnetically selected spleen tissue derived CD14+ cells of patients with PMF induced a denser tube like net than that of CTRLs; in addition, CD14+Tie2+ cells sorted from spleen tissue derived single cell suspension of patients with PMF show a higher expression of genes involved in angiogenesis than that found in CTRLs. Our results document the enrichment of Tie2+ monocytes expressing angiogenic genes in the spleen of patients with PMF, suggesting a role for these cells in starting/maintaining the pathological angiogenesis in this organ.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0156990
JournalPLoS One
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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