Recently, the gene for a novel mammalian hematopoietic growth factor homologous to murine interleukin 3 was isolated from a gibbon T cell line and expressed in monkey COS cells. The factor, termed multi-colony stimulating factor (multi-CSF) or interleukin 3, is stimulatory to human target cells. We investigated the range of enriched human bone marrow and fetal liver hematopoietic progenitors responsive to multi-CSF; compared the colony types observed with those obtained in the presence of recombinant granulocyte-macrophage CSF (GM-CSF); and analyzed the effects on colony formation of combining multi-CSF with GM-CSF or granulocyte-CSF (G-CSF). The results show that multi-CSF acts as a multipoietin. Alone it stimulates the formation of colonies derived from granulocyte, macrophage, eosinophil, and megakaryocyte progenitors. In combination with erythropoietin it supports the development of both erythroid and mixed colonies. Furthermore, the data show that multi-CSF is a more potent stimulus of erythroid progenitors than GM-CSF. In combination with G-CSF multi-CSF substantially increases granulocyte colony number over the number obtained with each factor alone. We conclude that multi-CSF may prove to have important therapeutic potential in vivo as a stimulus for hematopoiesis.


C A Sieff, C M Niemeyer, D G Nathan, S C Ekern, F R Bieber, Y C Yang, G Wong, S C Clark


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