Engineering humanized mice for improved hematopoietic reconstitution

Cell Mol Immunol. 2012 May;9(3):215-24. doi: 10.1038/cmi.2012.6. Epub 2012 Mar 19.


Humanized mice are immunodeficient animals engrafted with human hematopoietic stem cells that give rise to various lineages of human blood cells throughout the life of the mouse. This article reviews recent advances in the generation of humanized mice, focusing on practical considerations. We discuss features of different immunodeficient recipient mouse strains, sources of human hematopoietic stem cells, advances in expansion and genetic modification of hematopoietic stem cells, and techniques to modulate the cytokine environment of recipient mice, in order to enhance reconstitution of specific human blood lineage cells. We highlight the opportunities created by new technologies and discuss practical considerations on how to make best use of the widening array of basic models for specific research applications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Survival*
  • Cytokines / immunology
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Genetic Engineering
  • Hematopoiesis* / genetics
  • Hematopoiesis* / immunology
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Humans
  • Immunomodulation
  • Mice
  • Mice, Mutant Strains
  • Mice, SCID
  • Research Design
  • Stem Cell Niche
  • Transplantation, Heterologous


  • Cytokines