Cell Surface Marker
Cluster of differentiation (CD) molecules are markers on the cell surface, as recognized by specific sets of antibodies, used to identify the cell type, stage of differentiation and activity of a cell. CD117 is an important cell surface marker used to identify certain types of hematopoietic (blood) progenitors in the bone marrow. To be specific, hematopoietic stem cells (HSC), multipotent progenitors (MPP), and common myeloid progenitors (CMP) express high levels of CD117. Common lymphoid progenitors (CLP) expresses low surface levels of CD117. CD117 also identifies the earliest thymocyte progenitors in the thymus. To be specific, early T lineage progenitors (ETP/DN1) and DN2 thymocytes express high levels of c-Kit. It is also a marker for mouse prostate stem cells. In addition, mast cells, melanocytes in the skin, and interstitial cells of Cajal in the digestive tract express CD117.
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