In this study, we demonstrate a newly derived mouse model that supports engraftment of human hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) in the absence of irradiation. We cross the NOD.Cg-Prkdc(scid)Il2rg(tm1Wjl)/SzJ (NSG) strain with the C57BL/6J-Kit(W-41J)/J (C57BL/6.Kit(W41)) strain and engraft, without irradiation, the resulting NBSGW strain with human cord blood CD34+ cells. At 12-weeks postengraftment in NBSGW mice, we observe human cell chimerism in marrow (97% ± 0.4%), peripheral blood (61% ± 2%), and spleen (94% ± 2%) at levels observed with irradiation in NSG mice. We also detected a significant number of glycophorin-A-positive expressing cells in the developing NBSGW marrow. Further, the observed levels of human hematopoietic chimerism mimic those reported for both irradiated NSG and NSG-transgenic strains. This mouse model permits HSC engraftment while avoiding the complicating hematopoietic, gastrointestinal, and neurological side effects associated with irradiation and allows investigators without access to radiation to pursue engraftment studies with human HSCs.
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