UMR 5540, Université Victor Ségalen Bordeaux 2, Bordeaux, France.
The adhesion of haematopoietic progenitor cells (HPC) to the bone marrow microenvironment is a process regulated by cytokines. In this study, we have shown that flt3-ligand (FL), a growth factor that controls early haematopoiesis, regulated the function and expression of the beta-1 integrins, very late antigen (VLA)-4 and VLA-5 on HPC. The modulation of the adhesiveness of HPC by FL was studied by adhesion assays on umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC). Stimulation by FL induced two peaks of increased adhesiveness of HPC. The first peak was at around 30 min and was mechanistically related to an activation of the beta-1 integrins, mainly VLA-4 and VLA-5. The second peak was at around 12 h and was related to increased expression of VLA-4 and VLA-5. The control of HPC adhesiveness by FL is a previously unreported property of FL that may be important for the homing and the retention of flt3-expressing HPC within the bone marrow microenvironment.