Characterization of the human burst-forming unit-megakaryocyte

R. A. Briddell, J. E. Brandt, J. E. Straneva, E. F. Srour, R. Hoffman

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87 Scopus citations


Two classes of human marrow megakaryocyte progenitor cells are described. Colony-forming unit-megakaryocyte (CFU-MK)-derived colonies appeared in vitro after 12-day incubation; burst-forming unit-megakaryocyte (BFU-MK)-derived colonies appeared after 21 days. CFU-MK-derived colonies were primarily unifocal and composed of 11.6 ± 1.2 cells/colony; BFU-MK-derived colonies were composed of 2.3 ± 0.4 foci and 108.6 ± 4.4 cells/colony. CFU-MK and BFU-MK were separable by counterflow centrifugal elutriation. CFU-MK colony formation was diminished by exposure to 5-fluorouracil (5-FU); BFU-MK colony formation was unaffected. CFU-MK and BFU-MK were immunologically phenotyped. CFU-MK expressed the human progenitor cell antigen-1 (HPCA-1, CD34, clone My10) and a major histocompatibility class II locus, HLA-DR, and BFU-MK expressed only detectable amounts of CD34. BFU-MK colony formation was entirely dependent on addition of exogeneous hematopoietic growth factors. Recombinant granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) and interleukin-3 (IL-3) possessed such colony-stimulating activity, whereas recombinant erythropoietin (Epo), G-CSF, IL-1α, IL-4, and purified thrombocytopoiesis-stimulating factor did not. These studies indicate the existence of a human megakaryocyte progenitor cell, the BFU-MK, which has unique properties allowing it to be distinguished from the CFU-MK.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-151
Number of pages7
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology
  • Hematology
  • Cell Biology

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    Briddell, R. A., Brandt, J. E., Straneva, J. E., Srour, E. F., & Hoffman, R. (1989). Characterization of the human burst-forming unit-megakaryocyte. Blood, 74(1), 145-151.