To determine versican-producing cells in normocellular bone marrow and to evaluate chronological alteration in the number of versican-producing macrophages in bone marrow of patients with acute myelogenous leukaemia (AML) after cord blood stem cell transplantation (CBSCT) to gain insight in the significance of versican in recovery of haematopoiesis.Methods
We enrolled seven age-matched unrelated patients with normocellular bone marrow for determining versican-producing cells in bone marrow, CBSCT-treated patients with AML, 18 with fine and other four with poor engraftment, for determining chronological alteration of versican-expressing and CD68-expressing cells in transplanted bone marrow in reference to the total cells. Clot samples of patients with AML were collected from the +16 to +55 day after transplantation and separated into four groups. We included an AML case whose specimen was obtained on the +9 day. Cells positive in immunohistochemistry using antibodies to versican and CD68 were counted to obtain the mean±SD in a unit area of the bone marrow, plotted chronologically and compared with the numbers from the age-matched normocellular group.Results
We determined by a double immunohistochemistry that the versican-expressing cells in bone marrow are macrophages. The time-course curve demonstrated an inverse relationship between the versican-positive macrophages and the total cells in the transplanted bone marrow for over 55 days. In bone marrow of poor engraftment cases, versican-positive macrophages appeared to be decreased in comparison with age-matched and sampling day-matched patients.Conclusions
These results suggest that versican and/or versican-expressing macrophages positively contribute to bone marrow regeneration of patients with AML after CBSCT.