Development of a small molecule-based stem and progenitor expansion protocol to accelerate engraftment after cord blood transplantation

Patients undergoing cancer treatment may require a stem cell transplantation to reconstitute their damaged marrow responsible for the daily production of the blood cells. Umbilical cord blood (CB) transplantation provides the opportunity for patients without suitable donor to receive a lifesaving graft. Regrettably, this procedure is associated with a slower recovery of immune cells and platelets. Immune cells protect against infections while platelets prevent hemorrhages. Cord blood cells can be expanded in culture but the expanded cells often lose their capacity to produce high levels of blood cells. However, new drugs have been identified that can overcome this loss. Herein, we propose to test different combinations of these drugs to find the best one that provide the highest level of expansion of CB cells that retain the capacity to produce blood cells. This will be done by testing different combinations and by transplanting the expanded CB cells into an animal model. Furthermore, the capacity of drugs that promote the transport of the expanded cell to the bone will also be tested. Together, this work will allow the development of a new culture process that may allow greater use of banked CB units for the treatment of several blood diseases.
Principal Investigator / Supervisor
Co-Investigator(s) / Trainee
Canadian Blood Services
Postdoctoral Fellowship Program
Total Amount Awarded
Project Start Date
Project End Date