Novel findings about neovessel formation
The main role in new findings about neovessel formation is played by a protein called tissue factor. This factor turns out to have both a stimulatory function and an inhibitory function in the generation of blood vessels. Normally these two functions neutralize each other, but in diseases like retinopathy - where unwanted blood vessels grow into the retina - this balance is disturbed. The research team shows this in an article in the May issue of Nature Medicine.
Tissue factor is found in the cell walls of endothelial cells that line the lumenal side of blood vessels. The part of the tissue factor that faces the cell exterior sends signals, in combination with a certain so-called coagulation factor, to activate blood vessel cells to generate new vessel structures. The part of the tissue factor that resides on the inside of cells sends opposing signals that inhibit cell activation.
The group has unraveled these mechanisms by using several methods. For one thing, they have managed to generate transgenic mice that lack either the inhibitory mechanism, the stimulatory mechanism, or both. The results turned out accordingly: in mice without the inhibitory mechanism, for example, they have observed abnormally rapid growth of blood vessels in the retina and in tumors.
Another discovery reported in the article involves pathologically altered blood vessels from deceased patients with diabetes retinopathy. In these vessels it could be seen that the stimulatory mechanism had been activated, whereas the inhibitory part of tissue factor had an altered structure indicating that this mechanism had been turned off. These changes may have been responsible for the occurrence of blood-vessel abnormalities associated with diabetic retinopathy.
We are now looking for substances that can attenuate these altered structures in tissue factor, says Mattias Belting. He performed his studies during his stay at the prestigious Scripps Research Institute in San Diego, and is currently heading a research team at Lund University.
Tissue factor has been known to play a major role in triggering the coagulation of blood. These new discoveries show that it is also important in the generation of new blood vessels, i.e. angiogenesis. Medication to inhibit angiogenesis is now seen as a possible way of starving cancer tumors and perhaps fatty tissue in extremely obese individuals. In other words, there are myriad avenues of research that could lead to new treatments and drugs.
Ingela Björck | alfa
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...