Faculty Advisor

Adams, David S.


Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) have the potential to reconstitute the cellular components of blood. Thus they have therapeutic applications for immunosuppressed patients and for gene therapy. The purpose of this MQP, performed in collaboration with ViaCell Inc., was to investigate the expression of stem cell factor (SCF) in cell populations that accompany the isolation, amplification, and purification of HSCs from human umbilical cord blood. SCF is a growth factor known to bind CD-117 to induce stem cell proliferation. Since CD-117 was found to be up-regulated (Amaral 2002) during ViaCell's amplification process, we were interested to determine the regulation pattern of its ligand, SCF, using RT-PCR. Our data indicate the cell populations enriched for HSCs produce decreased levels of SCF perhaps due to a decrease in the cells that manufacture it, thus it may be a prime candidate for addition to the culture media to stimulate HSC growth.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

January 2002



Project Type

Major Qualifying Project


Restricted-WPI community only

Advisor Department

Biology and Biotechnology