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The Link between EGFL7 and AML

College of Medicine (COM)
Dorrance, Adrienne
Garzon, Ramiro
Shen, Changxian
Licensing Manager
Ezzell, Janel

T2017-126 Expansion of human hematopoietic stem and progenitor (HSPC) cells using Epidermal Growth Factor­-Like protein 7 (EGFL7).

The Need

Despite recent progress in understanding acute myeloid leukemia (AML) biology and the use of intensive treatments, the long-term overall survival is only 30-40% in younger (<60 years) and <10% in older adult AML patients. This highlights the urgent need for novel therapeutic approaches for adult AML patients. Aberrant expression of EGFL7 has been shown to be involved in carcinogenesis and disease progression of several solid tumors, including glioblastoma, live, breast, lung, and pancreatic cancers. Normally, EGFL7 has a role in neural stem cell self-renewal and protects endothelial cells from stress-induced apoptosis. To date, no one has identified a link between EGFL7 and AML.

The Technology

Researchers at The Ohio State University led by Drs. Adrienne Dorrance, Ramiro Garzon, and Changxian Shen have discovered two novel features of EGFL7:

1. Antibodies and peptides directed against EGFL7 can shrink tumors and reduce proliferation of cancer cells in animal models of AML.

2. EGFL7 alone is able to expand human and mouse HSPCs in vitro without the loss of stem cell potential. Until this point, no one has found this protein to have an effect on blood cells. Where a patient needs a stem cell transplant and no good blood marrow donors have been found, this source could serve as an alternative tool to expand blood in vitro.

Commercial Applications

  • Medicine
    • Therapies for Hematologic disorders
    • Oncology
  • Stem cells


  • Expansion of HSPCs without loss of stem cell potential
  • Applicable to stem cell transplantation patients lacking a good bone marrow donor
  • EGFL7 has a target against AML