O-Fucose and Fringe-modified NOTCH1 extracellular domain fragments as decoys to release niche-lodged hematopoietic progenitor cells

Shuiliang Yu, Weihuan Wang, Marwah Albakri, Xiaoxing Yu, Gurnoor Majihail, Seunghwan Lim, Rachel K. Lopilato, Atsuko Ito, John Letterio, Robert S. Haltiwanger, Lan Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Successful hematopoietic progenitor cell (HPC) transplant therapy is improved by mobilizing HPCs from the bone marrow niche in donors. Notch receptor-ligand interactions are known to retain HPCs in the bone marrow, and neutralizing antibodies against Notch ligands, Jagged-1 or Delta-like ligand (DLL4), or NOTCH2 receptor potentiates HPC mobilization. Notch-ligand interactions are dependent on posttranslational modification of Notch receptors with O-fucose and are modulated by Fringe-mediated extension of O-fucose moieties. We previously reported that O-fucosylglycans on Notch are required for Notch receptor-ligand engagement controlling hematopoietic stem cell quiescence and retention in the marrow niche. Here, we generated recombinant fragments of NOTCH1 or NOTCH2 extracellular domain carrying the core ligand-binding regions (EGF11-13) either as unmodified forms or as O-fucosylglycan-modified forms. We found that the addition of O-fucose monosaccharide or the Fringe-extended forms of O-fucose to EGF11-13 showed substantial increases in binding to DLL4. Furthermore, the O-fucose and Fringe-extended NOTCH1 EGF11-13 protein displayed much stronger binding to DLL4 than the NOTCH2 counterpart. When assessed in an in vitro 3D osteoblastic niche model, we showed that the Fringe-extended NOTCH1 EGF11-13 fragment effectively released lodged HPC cells with a higher potency than the NOTCH2 blocking antibody. We concluded that O-fucose and Fringe-modified NOTCH1 EGF11-13 protein can be utilized as effective decoys for stem cell niche localized ligands to potentiate HPC egress and improve HPC collection for hematopoietic cell therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)582-592
Number of pages11
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2021


  • Decoys
  • Hematopoietic progenitor cells
  • Notch
  • O-fucosylglycans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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