Mixed hematopoietic chimerism has been found to be a requirement for achieving specific immunologic hyporesponsiveness. Some of the requirements for in vitro and in vivo coexistence of discordant hematopoietic systems in the pig-to-baboon (or human) model have been investigated. We have tested the efficacy of pig-specific cytokines (PSC) (IL3, SCF, GM-CSF) in the mobilization of porcine bone marrow (BM) progenitors in vivo (i) in the pig and (ii) in baboons that underwent a conditioning regimen and porcine BM transplantation. In a preliminary in vitro study, porcine BM cells were incubated in various media to assess the effect of human plasma on pig progenitors in a colony-forming unit (CFU) assay. In vivo studies, four pigs received PSC and one control pig did not. Six baboons underwent natural antibody removal, with subsequent pig BM transplantation. Four of these six underwent nonmyeloablative (n=2) or myeloablative (n=2) conditioning and all received PSC treatment. Two baboons did not receive PSC, one of which underwent a nonmyeloablative regimen. Sequential blood samples and BM biopsies in pigs and baboons were analyzed by CFU assay for the detection of porcine cells. Baboon samples were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to detect porcine DNA. In the case of the in vitro tests, colony forming by porcine progenitors was not inhibited by media containing human plasma and for the in vivo tests, PSC increased the number of progenitors in pig BM; mobilization of progenitors into the peripheral blood was observed. PSC-treated baboons which experienced transient depletion of leukocytes < 1,000/ml (as an effect of the conditioning regimen) had porcine BM cells detectable by PCR for as long as day 316 after BM transplantation. In conclusion we found that: (i) under the conditions of these studies, in vitro porcine progenitor cell growth was not inhibited by human plasma containing natural antibody and complement; (ii) PSC treatment led to an increased number of progenitors in pig BM and peripheral blood; (iii) the combination of an effective conditioning regimen and treatment with PSC was capable of inducing long-term survival of pig progenitors in baboons, although only a low level of engraftment was achieved.