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Engineered endothelial progenitor cells that overexpress prostacyclin protect vascular cells.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Cellular Physiology
1097-4652
Publisher
Wiley Blackwell (John Wiley & Sons)
Publication Date
Volume
227
Issue
7
Pages
2907–2916
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1002/jcp.23035
PMID: 21938725
Source
Medline

Abstract

Prostacyclin (PGI2) is a potent vasodilator and important mediator of vascular homeostasis; however, its clinical use is limited because of its short (<2-min) half-life. Thus, we hypothesize that the use of engineered endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) that constitutively secrete high levels of PGI2 may overcome this limitation of PGI2 therapy. A cDNA encoding COX-1-10aa-PGIS, which links human cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1) to prostacyclin synthase (PGIS), was delivered via nucleofection into outgrowth EPCs derived from rat bone marrow mononuclear cells. PGI2-secreting strains (PGI2-EPCs) were established by continuous subculturing of transfected cells under G418 selection. Genomic PCR, RT-PCR, and Western blot analyses confirmed the overexpression of COX-1-10aa-PGIS in PGI2-EPCs. PGI2-EPCs secreted significantly higher levels of PGI2 in vitro than native EPCs (P < 0.05) and showed higher intrinsic angiogenic capability; conditioned medium (CM) from PGI2-EPCs promoted better tube formation than CM from native EPCs (P < 0.05). Cell- and paracrine-mediated in vitro angiogenesis was attenuated when COX-1-10aa-PGIS protein expression was knocked down. Whole-cell patch-clamp studies showed that 4-aminopyridine-sensitive K(+) current density was increased significantly in rat smooth muscle cells (rSMCs) cocultured under hypoxia with PGI2-EPCs (7.50 ± 1.59 pA/pF; P < 0.05) compared with rSMCs cocultured with native EPCs (3.99 ± 1.26 pA/pF). In conclusion, we successfully created EPC strains that overexpress an active novel enzyme resulting in consistent secretion of PGI2. PGI2-EPCs showed enhanced intrinsic proangiogenic properties and provided favorable paracrine-mediated cellular protections, including promoting in vitro angiogenesis of native EPCs and hyperpolarization of SMCs under hypoxia.

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