Hematopoietic stem cells are self renewing pluripotent cells often characterized by the expression of CD34. Studies have shown that decreased expression of CD34 tends to correlate with the decreased self renewal properties and pluripotent potential. Culturing CD34+ cells in a cytokine mixture of TPO, SCF, and FLT-3 Ligand for short time periods (2-7 days) allows CD34+ cells to proliferate without decreasing CD34 expression, thus retaining their stem cell properties. The combination of these cytokines allows for the ex vivo expansion of the most immature hematopoietic stem cells in cord blood or bone marrow preporations, but can be supplemented with other cytokines to promote specific linages. For example, GM-CSF (Catalog 200-15) and/or G-CSF (Catalog 200-14) can be added to promote monocytes and granulocytes while EPO can be added to promote erthroid cells and IL-6 and/or IL-3 can promote expansion of more mature hematopoietic progenitor cells (Catalog PB-500-08).
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