Growth hormone-induced stimulation of multilineage human hematopoiesis

Stem Cells. 2005 Sep;23(8):1170-9. doi: 10.1634/stemcells.2004-0322. Epub 2005 Jun 13.


Growth hormone (GH) has been shown to have significant positive effects on hemato-lymphopoiesis in rodent models and, more recently, to increase thymic mass and circulating naïve CD4+ T cells in humans infected with the human immunodeficiency virus, type 1. To determine whether the latter effects on human T lymphopoiesis might be due, at least in part, to effects on the bone marrow (BM), we examined the specific effects of GH and its proximal mediator, insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I), on human multilineage hematopoiesis in fetal BM (FBM). Using in vitro analysis, we found that GH and IGF-I each stimulated the expansion of primitive multilineage CD34+CD38- hematopoietic progenitor cells and increased yields of several hematopoietic subpopulations, including CD34+CD38+CD10+ lymphoid progenitor cells. Additionally, GH and IGF-I had direct effects on FBM stromal elements, inducing the expansion of myeloid-like CD45+CD14+ FBM stromal cells and enhancing production of the hematopoietic cytokine interleukin-3 by fibroblast-like CD45-CD10+ FBM stromal cells. Surface expression of GH and type-I IGF receptors correlated with the observed biologic responses to these hormones. Whereas GH enhanced the proliferation of FBM progenitors and stroma, IGF-I exerted a predominantly antiapoptotic effect. Finally, both GH and IGF-I stimulated the generation of hematopoietic colony forming cells. These findings identify specific targets of GH and IGF-I within human FBM, and demonstrate direct and indirect effects that may contribute to GH-mediated enhancement of human hemato-lymphopoiesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, CD / analysis
  • Bone Marrow Cells / cytology
  • Bone Marrow Cells / drug effects*
  • Bone Marrow Cells / metabolism
  • Cell Lineage / drug effects
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Fetus / cytology
  • Growth Hormone / pharmacology*
  • Hematopoiesis / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-3 / metabolism
  • Lymphopoiesis / drug effects
  • Receptor, IGF Type 1 / analysis
  • Receptors, Somatotropin / analysis
  • Stromal Cells / cytology
  • Stromal Cells / drug effects
  • T-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • T-Lymphocytes / drug effects


  • Antigens, CD
  • Interleukin-3
  • Receptors, Somatotropin
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
  • Growth Hormone
  • Receptor, IGF Type 1