Facilitated engraftment of human hematopoietic cells in severe combined immunodeficient mice following a single injection of Cl2MDP liposomes

W. Terpstra, P. J.M. Leenen, C. Van Den Bos, A. Prins, W. A.M. Loenen, M. M.A. Verstegen, S. Van Wyngaardt, N. Van Rooijen, A. W. Wognum, G. Wagemaker, J. J. Wielenga, B. Löwenberg*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Transplantation of normal and malignant human hematopoietic cells into severe combined immunodeficient (SCID) mice allows for evaluation of long-term growth abilities of these cells and provides a preclinical model for therapeutic interventions. However, large numbers of cells are required for successful engraftment in preirradiated mice due to residual graft resistance, that may be mediated by cells from the mononuclear phagocytic system. Intravenous (i.v.) injection of liposomes containing dichloromethylene diphosphonate (Cl2MDP) may eliminate mouse macrophages in spleen and liver. In this study outgrowth of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cells and umbilical cord blood (UCB) cells in SCID mice conditioned with a single i.v. injection of Cl2MDP liposomes in addition to sublethal total body irradiation (TBI) was compared to outgrowth of these cells in SCID mice that had received TBI alone. A two- to 10-fold increase in outgrowth of AML cells was observed in four cases of AML. Administration of 107 UCB cells reproducibly engrafted SCID mice that had been conditioned with Cl2MDP liposomes and TBI, whereas human cells were not detected in mice conditioned with TBI alone. As few as 2 x 104 purified CD34+ UCB cells engrafted in all mice treated with Cl2MDP liposomes. In SCID mice treated with macrophage depletion unexpected graft failures were not observed. Histological examination of the spleen showed that TBI and Cl2MDP liposomes i.v. resulted in a transient elimination of all macrophage subsets in the spleen, whereas TBI had a minor effect. Cl2MDP liposomes were easy to use and their application was not associated with appreciable side-effects. Cl2MDP liposome pretreatment in combination with TBI allows for reproducible outgrowth of high numbers of human hematopoietic cells in SCID mice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1049-1054
Number of pages6
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 1997

Bibliographical note

Funding Information: This work was supported by the Dutch Cancer Society.

Cop. 1997 Stockton Press All rights reserved


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