ABCB1 is predominantly expressed in human fetal neural stem/progenitor cells at an early development stage

Atsuyo Yamamoto, Tomoko Shofuda, Mohammed Omedul Islam, Yasuhiro Nakamura, Mami Yamasaki, Hideyuki Okano, Yonehiro Kanemura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


ABCB1 is a human ABC transporter originally characterized by its ability to cause resistance to chemotherapy drugs in cancer cells, and later found to be functionally expressed in human neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs) in vitro. Here, we performed a detailed examination of ABCB1's expression on human NSPCs in vitro and in human fetal brain tissues, and analyzed the cellular properties of the human NSPCs expressing ABCB1. We confirmed that ABCB1 was expressed on the surface of human NSPCs, and its level correlated well with those of Nestin and CD133. The population of fluorescence-activated cell sorter-sorted human NSPCs expressing high levels of ABCB1 showed enrichment of proliferating cells, higher expression of 246 genes (e.g., RGS6, IGFBP7, GFAP, TNC, Hes1), and lower expression of 71 genes (e.g., STMN2, DLX5, BASP1, DCX, CD24) compared with human NSPCs expressing low or no ABCB1. In situ, ABCB1 was selectively expressed in cells in the ventricular or subventricular regions of lateral ventricles that expressed Nestin in human development. These findings suggest that ABCB1 is predominantly expressed in immature human fetal NSPCs in vitro and at early developmental stages in vivo, and that it may be a useful marker for human NSPCs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2615-2623
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of neuroscience research
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Sept


  • ABCB1
  • Cell surface marker
  • Fetal brain
  • Human
  • Neural stem cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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