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AIBP-mediated cholesterol efflux instructs hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell fate

Gu Q, Yang X, Lv J, Zhang J, Xia B, Kim JD, Wang R, Xiong F, Meng S, Clements TP, Tandon B, Wagner DS, Diaz MF, Wenzel PL, Miller YI, Traver D, Cooke JP, Li W, Zon LI, Chen K, Bai Y, Fang L
Science. 2019 Jan 31. pii: eaav1749. doi: 10.1126/science.aav1749. [Epub ahead of print]
Hypercholesterolemia, the driving force of atherosclerosis, accelerates the expansion and mobilization of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs). The molecular determinants connecting hypercholesterolemia with hematopoiesis are unclear. Here we report that a somite-derived pro-hematopoietic cue, AIBP, orchestrates HSPC emergence from the hemogenic endothelium, a type of specialized endothelium manifesting hematopoietic potential. Mechanistically, AIBP-mediated cholesterol efflux activates endothelial Srebp2, the master transcription factor for cholesterol biosynthesis, which in turn transactivates Notch and promotes HSPC emergence. Srebp2 inhibition impairs hypercholesterolemia-induced HSPC expansion. Srebp2 activation and Notch upregulation are associated with HSPC expansion in hypercholesterolemic human subjects. Genome-wide ChIP-seq, RNA-seq, and ATAC-seq indicate that Srebp2 trans-regulates Notch pathway genes required for hematopoiesis. Our studies outline an AIBP-regulated Srebp2-dependent paradigm for HSPC emergence in development and HPSC expansion in atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.