Exploring erythropoiesis of common carp (Cyprinus carpio) using an invitro colony assay in the presence of recombinant carp kit ligand A and erythropoietin

Fumihiko Katakura, Takeshi Yabu, Takuya Yamaguchi, Jiro Miyamae, Yuki Shirinashihama, Teruyuki Nakanishi, Tadaaki Moritomo

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7 Citations (Scopus)


The use of invitro colony assays in mammals has contributed to identification of erythroid progenitor cells such as burst-forming unit-erythroid (BFU-E) and colony-forming unit-erythroid (CFU-E) progenitors, and serves to examine functions of erythropoietic growth factors like Erythropoietin (Epo) and Kit ligand. Here, we established an invitro colony-forming assay capable of investigating erythropoiesis in carp (Cyprinus carpio), cloned and functionally characterized recombinant homologous molecules Epo and Kit ligand A (Kitla), and identified three distinct erythroid progenitor cells in carp. Recombinant carp Epo induced the formation of CFU-E-like and BFU-E-like erythroid colonies, expressing erythroid marker genes, β-globin, epor and gata1. Recombinant carp Kitla alone induced limited colony formation, whereas a combination of Kitla and Epo dramatically enhanced erythroid colony formation and colony cell growth, as well as stimulated the formation of thrombocytic/erythroid colonies expressing not only erythroid markers but also thrombocytic markers, cd41 and c-mpl. Utilizing this colony assay to examine the distribution of distinct erythroid progenitor cells in carp, we demonstrated that carp head and trunk kidney play a primary role in erythropoiesis, while the spleen plays a secondary. Furthermore, we showed that presumably bi-potent thrombocytic/erythroid progenitor cells localize principally in the trunk kidney. Our results indicate that teleost fish possess mechanisms of Epo- and Kitla-dependent erythropoiesis similar to those in other vertebrates, and also help to demonstrate the diversity of erythropoietic sites among vertebrates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-22
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopmental and Comparative Immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015


  • Colony assay
  • Erythropoiesis
  • Erythropoietin
  • Kit ligand A
  • Teleost


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