Human embryonic stem cell-derived hematoendothelial progenitors engraft chicken embryos

Tea Soon Park, Elias T. Zambidis, Jennifer L. Lucitti, Alison Logar, Bradley B. Keller, Bruno Péault

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate whether human embryonic stem cells (hESC) committed in culture into hematopoietic/endothelial cell progenitors can be further developed into mature blood and vascular cells following transplantation into chicken embryos. Materials and Methods: The yolk sac of 42- to 44-hour chicken embryos received yolk sac injections of unfractionated human embryoid body (hEB) cells, CD34-positive hEB cells, or CD34+CD45+ granulocyte colony-stimulating factor-mobilized human peripheral blood hematopoietic stem-progenitor cells. Human cells in the host were detected by flow cytometry and immunohistochemistry. Results: All injected cell populations engrafted chicken hematopoietic organs, as assessed by detection of CD45+ cells in the spleen, bursa of Fabricius, and thymus. CD34+ day -10 hEB cells showed the highest efficiency for producing human CD45+ cells in the hosts and yielded human glycophorin A+ erythroid, CD13+ myeloid, and CD19+ lymphoid cells in the spleen and bursa of Fabricius. Spleen cells from chimeric embryos also contained human colony-forming units-granulocyte macrophage, as assessed in methylcellulose colony-forming assays. Human endothelial cells expressing vascular endothelial-cadherin, von Willebrand factor, CD31, and the receptor for the Ulex europaeus lectin were also observed in the yolk sac vasculature following injection of either unfractionated or CD34+ day -10 hEB cells. Conclusion: Primitive angiohematopoietic stem cells (total and CD34+ day -10 hEB cells) as well as adult hematopoietic stem cells could home to intraembryonic blood-forming organs following injection into the yolk sac. These observations demonstrate the utility of the avian embryo as a convenient and reliable host to model the angiohematopoietic development of human embryonic, or other early stem cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-41
Number of pages11
JournalExperimental Hematology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Hematology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research


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