Neutrophil-derived MMP-9 mediates synergistic mobilization of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells by the combination of G-CSF and the chemokines GRObeta/CXCL2 and GRObetaT/CXCL2delta4

Louis M Pelus, Huimin Bian, Andrew G King, Seiji Fukuda
Blood 2004 January 1, 103 (1): 110-9
Mobilized peripheral blood stem cells (PBSCs) are widely used for transplantation, but mechanisms mediating their release from marrow are poorly understood. We previously demonstrated that the chemokines GRObeta/CXCL2 and GRObetaT/CXCL2Delta4 rapidly mobilize PBSC equivalent to granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) and are synergistic with G-CSF. We now show that mobilization by GRObeta/GRObetaT and G-CSF, alone or in combination, requires polymorphonuclear neutrophil (PMN)-derived proteases. Mobilization induced by GRObeta/GRObetaT is associated with elevated levels of plasma and marrow matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9) and mobilization and MMP-9 are absent in neutrophil-depleted mice. G-CSF mobilization correlates with elevated neutrophil elastase (NE), cathepsin G (CG), and MMP-9 levels within marrow and is partially blocked by either anti-MMP-9 or the NE inhibitor MeOSuc-Ala-Ala-Pro-Val-CMK. Mobilization and protease accumulation are absent in neutrophil-depleted mice. Synergistic PBSC mobilization observed when G-CSF and GRObeta/GRObetaT are combined correlates with a synergistic rise in the level of plasma MMP-9, reduction in marrow NE, CG, and MMP-9 levels, and a coincident increase in peripheral blood PMNs but decrease in marrow PMNs compared to G-CSF. Synergistic mobilization is completely blocked by anti-MMP-9 but not MeOSuc-Ala-Ala-Pro-Val-CMK and absent in MMP-9-deficient or PMN-depleted mice. Our results indicate that PMNs are a common target for G-CSF and GRObeta/GRObetaT-mediated PBSC mobilization and, importantly, that synergistic mobilization by G-CSF plus GRObeta/GRObetaT is mediated by PMN-derived plasma MMP-9.

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