Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Blueprint for blood vessel fusion discovered

11.06.2013
The fusion of blood vessels during the formation of the vascular system follows a uniform process.

In this process, the blood vessels involved go through different phases of a common choreography, in which the splitting and the rearrangement of endothelial cells play a critical role. Markus Affolter`s research group at the Biozentrum, University of Basel, has been able to demonstrate this in a living organism, the zebrafish. The findings have been published in the journal „Developmental Cell“.


Blood vessels (green) and endothelial cell nuclei (red) in the head of a living zebrafish embryo.
Photo: University of Basel

In the initial stages of the formation of new blood vessels, the leading cells of two vessel sprouts, the so-called tip cells, come into contact with each other. In these stages, tip cells have the task of making contact with other tip cells, to properly connect with them and so to form a common tube to establish blood flow. The research group of Markus Affolter at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel has been able to examine how this process works in detail using a living organism, the zebrafish.

First fusion, then splitting

The scientists showed that the generation of new blood vessels is based on an underlying uniform architectural plan. All forms of blood vessels that develop via sprouting make connections according to this blueprint. During the formation process, the tip cells of both blood vessels split after they have built the connection.

Transformation makes the point of fusion indiscernible

Furthermore, the team of scientists observed that the cells are subsequently rearranged so that each tip cell becomes part of a normal blood vessel. These cells can then no longer be distinguished from the other blood vessel cells. „It is practically not possible to identify the fusion site after the fusion process has been completed, „ explained Affolter. „The former tip cells can now fulfil all the functions of a blood vessel cell and are thus multifunctionally used.“ The research group was also able to show that the molecule VE-cadherin gives a signal to the blood vessel indicating that a contact between two tip cells has been successful, thereby completing the contact phase.

The zebrafish is a suitable model organism for such investigations. The developing embryo is almost transparent, which makes it possible to closely observe blood vessel generation within the living animal. It is the first time that such a cell splitting process and the transformation of the architecture of a blood vessel could be demonstrated during the formation of new vessel connections in a closed vascular system. Markus Affolter`s group would now like to more closely investigate in living zebrafish, how blood vessel tip cells recognize each other and connect, which additional molecules control the fusion process and how tumors in an organism attach to the already existing circulation.

Full Citation

Anna Lenard, Elin Ellertsdottir, Lukas Herwig, Alice Krudewig, Loic Sauteur, Heinz-Georg Belting, and Markus Affolter (2013)
In Vivo Analysis Reveals A Highly Stereotypic Morphogenetic Pathway of Vascular Anastomosis
Developmental Cell, Volume 25, Issue 5, 492-506, 10 June 2013 | doi: 10.1016/j.devcel.2013.05.010

Further Information

Prof. Dr. Markus Affolter, University of Basel, Biozentrum, Klingelbergstrasse 50/70, 4056 Basel, Switzerland. Tel. +41 61 267 20 72, E-Mail: markus.affolter@unibas.ch

Heike Sacher | Universität Basel
Further information:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.devcel.2013.05.010 -
http://www.biozentrum.unibas.ch/research/groups-platforms/overview/unit/affolter/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Enduring cold temperatures alters fat cell epigenetics
19.04.2018 | University of Tokyo

nachricht Full of hot air and proud of it
18.04.2018 | University of Pittsburgh

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Writing and deleting magnets with lasers

Study published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces is the outcome of an international effort that included teams from Dresden and Berlin in Germany, and the US.

Scientists at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) together with colleagues from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) and the University of Virginia...

Im Focus: Gamma-ray flashes from plasma filaments

Novel highly efficient and brilliant gamma-ray source: Based on model calculations, physicists of the Max PIanck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg propose a novel method for an efficient high-brilliance gamma-ray source. A giant collimated gamma-ray pulse is generated from the interaction of a dense ultra-relativistic electron beam with a thin solid conductor. Energetic gamma-rays are copiously produced as the electron beam splits into filaments while propagating across the conductor. The resulting gamma-ray energy and flux enable novel experiments in nuclear and fundamental physics.

The typical wavelength of light interacting with an object of the microcosm scales with the size of this object. For atoms, this ranges from visible light to...

Im Focus: Basel researchers succeed in cultivating cartilage from stem cells

Stable joint cartilage can be produced from adult stem cells originating from bone marrow. This is made possible by inducing specific molecular processes occurring during embryonic cartilage formation, as researchers from the University and University Hospital of Basel report in the scientific journal PNAS.

Certain mesenchymal stem/stromal cells from the bone marrow of adults are considered extremely promising for skeletal tissue regeneration. These adult stem...

Im Focus: Like a wedge in a hinge

Researchers lay groundwork to tailor drugs for new targets in cancer therapy

In the fight against cancer, scientists are developing new drugs to hit tumor cells at so far unused weak points. Such a “sore spot” is the protein complex...

Im Focus: The Future of Ultrafast Solid-State Physics

In an article that appears in the journal “Review of Modern Physics”, researchers at the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (LAP) assess the current state of the field of ultrafast physics and consider its implications for future technologies.

Physicists can now control light in both time and space with hitherto unimagined precision. This is particularly true for the ability to generate ultrashort...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

IWOLIA: A conference bringing together German Industrie 4.0 and French Industrie du Futur

09.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Diamond-like carbon is formed differently to what was believed -- machine learning enables development of new model

19.04.2018 | Materials Sciences

Electromagnetic wizardry: Wireless power transfer enhanced by backward signal

19.04.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Ultrafast electron oscillation and dephasing monitored by attosecond light source

19.04.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>