Erin Taylor, Samir Taoudi and Alexander Medvinsky*
MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine, Institute for Stem Cell Research, University of Edinburgh, U.K.
ABSTRACT The E11.5 aorta-gonad-mesonephros (AGM) region is a site of hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) development prior to colonisation of the embryonic liver. The generation of HSCs in the embryo starting from E11 is very rapid. Here, we have assessed hematopoietic development in the AGM region during E11 at precise somitic ages. Although the numbers of committed hematopoietic precursors fluctuate throughout the day, the repopulation activity in the AGM region noticeably increases from mid (44 s.p.) to end (48 s.p.) day 11 of gestation. While prior to mid day 11 two thirds of AGM regions contain no definitive HSCs, shortly prior to liver colonisation, all older day 11 embryos contain definitive HSC. Nevertheless, all E11 AGM regions even at early somitic stages have the capacity to expand numbers of definitive HSCs ex vivo. Quantitative anatomical analysis confirmed preferential localization of intra-aortic clusters (IACs) to the ventral domain of the dorsal aorta during entire day 11 of development. No clear correlation was established between IAC numbers and the presence of definitive HSCs.Keywords:
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