Sherwood RI, Christensen JL, Weissman IL, Wagers AJ. 2004. Determinants of skeletal muscle contributions from circulating cells, bone marrow cells, and hematopoietic stem cells. Stem cells (Dayton, Ohio). 22(7):1292-304. Pubmed: 15579647


To investigate the factors that regulate incorporation into uninjured or damaged skeletal muscle of donor markers derived from unfractionated bone marrow (BM) cells or from highly purified c-kit+ Thy1.1lo Lin- Sca-1+ hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), we evaluated myofiber chimerism of multiple muscle groups in irradiated and transplanted recipient mice and in unirradiated parabiotic animals. Uninjured panniculus carnosus, diaphragm, and abdominal muscles infrequently incorporated donor markers into myofibers in a subset of animals after either BM or HSC transplantation; however, acute muscle injury was essential to elicit contributions to triceps surae (TS) and tibialis anterior muscles. The low level of incorporation of donor marker-expressing myofibers could not be enhanced either by transplantation into newborn recipients or by induced migration of HSCs into the periphery. Analysis of muscle chimerism in unirradiated animals joined surgically by parabiosis revealed that contributions of circulating cells to myofibers in the TS were injury dependent and that at least some circulating cells with the potential to contribute to regenerating muscle derive from BM, suggesting that hematoablative preconditioning is not required for such contributions. In all cases tested, donor-derived myofibers expressed both donor-specific and host-specific markers, suggesting that they arise by low-level fusion into skeletal muscle of cells that can include the progeny of HSCs. It is not yet clear whether such events represent a normal myogenic pathway or a pathological response to muscle damage.

Related Faculty

Photo of Amy Wagers

Amy Wagers seeks to change the way we repair our tissues after an injury. Her research focuses on defining the factors and mechanisms that regulate the migration, expansion, and regenerative potential of adult blood-forming and muscle-forming stem cells.

Photo of Rich Sherwood

Richard Sherwood develops computationally driven methods to predict genome function and stem cell fate determination.

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