Improving our understanding of the intricacies of hematopoietic specification of induced or embryonic human pluripotent stem cells is beneficial for many areas of research and translational medicine. Currently, it is not clear whether, during human pluripotent stem cells hematopoietic differentiation in vitro, the maturation of definitive progenitors proceeds through a primitive progenitor (hemangioblast) intermediate or if it develops independently. The objective of this study was to investigate the early stages of hematopoietic specification of pluripotent stem cells in vitro. By implementing an adherent culture, serum-free differentiation system that utilizes a small molecule, CHIR99021, to induce human pluripotent stem cells toward various hematopoietic lineages, we established that, compared with the OP9 coculture hematopoietic induction system, the application of CHIR99021 alters the early steps of hematopoiesis such as hemangioblasts, angiogenic hematopoietic progenitors, and hemogenic endothelium. Importantly, it is associated with the loss of hemangioblast progenitors, loss of CD43+ (primitive hematopoietic marker) expression, and predominant development of blast-forming unit erythroid colonies in semisolid medium. These data support the hypothesis that the divergence of primitive and definitive programs during human pluripotent stem cells differentiation precedes the hemangioblast stage. Furthermore, we have shown that the inhibition of primitive hematopoiesis is associated with an increase in hematopoietic potential, which is a fruitful finding due to the growing need for lymphoid and myeloid cells in translational applications.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology
- Cancer Research