Human subcutaneous adipose cells support complete differentiation but not self-renewal of hematopoietic progenitors



Adipose tissue is now considered as an endocrine organ implicated in energy regulation, inflammation and immune response, and as a source of multipotent cells with a broad range of differentiation capacities. Some of these cells are of a mesenchymal type which can—like their bone marrow (BM) counterpart—support hematopoiesis, since in a previous study we were able to reconstitute lethally irradiated mice by cells isolated from adipose tissue. In the present study, we established that cells derived from the stroma-vascular fraction of human subcutaneous fat pads support the complete differentiation of hematopoietic progenitors into myeloid and B lymphoid cells. However, these cells are unable to maintain the survival and self-renewal of hematopoietic stem cells. These features, similar to those of BM adipocytes, are the opposite of those of other cell types derived from mesenchymal progenitors such as BM myofibroblasts or osteoblasts. Because it is abundant and accessible, adipose tissue could be a convenient source of cells for the short-term reconstitution of hematopoiesis in man. J. Cell. Physiol. 208: 282–288, 2006. © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.