In the past decade, we have witnessed significant advances in ex vivo hematopoietic stem cell culture expansion, progressing to the point where clinical trials are being designed and conducted. Preclinical milestone investigations provided data to enable expansion of portions of hematopoietic grafts in a clinical setting, indicating safety and feasibility of this approach. Data derived from current clinical trials indicate successful reconstitution of hematopoiesis after myeloablative chemoradiotherapy using infusion of ex vivo-expanded perfusion cultures. Future avenues of exploration will focus upon refining preclinical and clinical studies in which cocktails of available cytokines, novel molecules and sophisticated expansion systems will explore expansion of blood, marrow and umbilical cord blood cells.
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