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.