Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers of the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) elucidate the early mechanism of cardiovascular specification

03.07.2008
Important clinical and pharmaceutical implications.

The mature heart is composed by different cell types, including contractile cardiac cells, vascular cells, smooth muscle cells as well as pacemaker cells. During embryonic development as well as during embryonic stem cell differentiation, the different cardiovascular cell types arise from the differentiation of multipotent cardiovascular progenitors. The mechanism that promotes multipotent cardiovascular progenitor specification from undifferentiated mesoderm cell remains largely unknown.

Now, researchers from the Université Libre de Bruxelles lead by Cédric Blanpain (IRIBHM, Faculty of Medicine), shed new light into the early mechanism that governs cardiovascular specification. This research is published in July 3 issue of Cell Stem Cell.

Researchers uncover the key molecular switch that specifies undifferentiated mesodermal cells to become cardiovascular progenitors. The authors of this study found that a protein called Mesp1 acts a master regulator of multipotent cardiovascular progenitor specification. They showed that a very transient expression of a Mesp1, increase by more than 500% the differentiation of pluripotent stem cells into cardiac and vascular cells, which represent the greatest promotion of cardiovascular differentiation induced by a single factor. “When we look at the Mesp1 stimulated cells under the microscope, it was just amazing! It was looking like all cells became cardiac cells, and were spontaneously beating everywhere in the dish”, comments Antoine Bondue, the first author of the paper.

To better understand the molecular mechanism by which Mesp1 promotes cardiovascular specification, researchers from ULB used a genome-wide analysis to identify which genes are regulated by Mesp1. They found that Mesp1 directly activated many previously identified key genes responsible for cardiovascular differentiation. “Mesp1 allows the coordinate expression of all these important cardiac genes at the right place and at the right time”, comments Cédric Blanpain, the principal investigator of this study. Mesp1 also directly repressed genes promoting the acquisition of other possible cell identity during this developmental stage, ensuring the specificity in the promotion of cardiovascular cell identity induced by Mesp1. These results demonstrate that Mesp1 acts as a key regulatory switch during cardiovascular specification, residing at the top of the hierarchy of the gene network responsible for cardiovascular cell fate determination.

This new and exciting study from Cédric Blanpain Lab has also important clinical and pharmaceutical implications. Cardiovascular diseases are the primary cause of death in western countries. The method presented in this study may be used in the future to increase the source of cardiovascular cells for cellular therapy in humans, but also to generate the large amount of cardiovascular cells required for toxicology and drug screenings.

Nancy Dath | alfa
Further information:
http://www.ulb.ac.be

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Minimising risks of transplants
22.02.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

nachricht FAU researchers demonstrate that an oxygen sensor in the body reduces inflammation
22.02.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Decoding the structure of the huntingtin protein

22.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Camera technology in vehicles: Low-latency image data compression

22.02.2018 | Information Technology

Minimising risks of transplants

22.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>