Reciprocal regulation of human basophil and eosinophil differentiation by separate T-cell-derived factors.
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Basophil and eosinophil progenitors are present in human hemopoietic tissues, including cord blood. In the present studies, cord blood cultures demonstrating differentiation of basophils or eosinophils have been maintained for prolonged periods in the presence of conditioned medium from a human T-cell leukemia line (Mo-CM). Peak basophil counts and histamine levels were followed almost invariably by a second peak of eosinophils in vitro. Morphologic examination revealed the consistent presence of cells with mixed basophil-eosinophil granulation. Both basophil and eosinophil growth-stimulating activities were found in Mo-CM, were heat stable and nondialyzable, and could be partially separated from each other by a multistep procedure that included ion-exchange chromatography on DEAE-cellulose. Mixing experiments using separated basophil- and eosinophil-stimulating activities revealed that suppression of basophil growth was accompanied by reciprocal enhancement of eosinophil growth, a finding that could be confirmed on analysis of morphology of single colonies from cord blood progenitors in methylcellulose. These studies point to the existence of regulatory growth factors in Mo-CM that stimulate and/or inhibit the growth and differentiation of human basophils and eosinophils from a common, committed progenitor cell.
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