Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Blood runs deep: Lab blood vessel model sheds light on angiogenesis

31.01.2019

To provide sufficient oxygen to tissues and organs within the body, blood vessels need to sprout new offshoots to form a widespread blood supply network, much like the trunk, branches, and twigs of a tree. However, the mechanisms by which this sprouting occurs, in both normal healthy conditions and in conditions like cancer, have remained unclear.

To shed light on this issue, Prof. Yukiko T. Matsunaga's research group based at The University of Tokyo working in collaboration within the international SMMiL-E project with the team of Dr. Fabrice Soncin at CNRS in Lille, France, used a model of a blood vessel created in the lab to study how a molecule called EGFL7 is involved in blood vessel sprouting and integrity.


Prof. Yukiko T. Matsunaga's research group used a model of a blood vessel created in the lab to study how a molecule called EGFL7 is involved in blood vessel sprouting and integrity.

Credit: 2019 Yukiko Matsunaga, Institute of Industrial Science, The University of Tokyo

This new study, reported in the journal Biomaterials, reveals much about the formation of new blood vessels, a process known as angiogenesis, and suggests EGFL7 as a good target for treating diseases in which this process plays a key role.

Such research on angiogenesis is important in a clinical context. For example, when solid tumors form, they need to promote angiogenesis to obtain an adequate blood supply in order to keep growing.

Reduced integrity of blood vessels is also an issue in various diseases, such as diabetic retinopathy, in which vessels in the retina are excessively leaky and their network structure gradually deteriorates. This background prompted the teams to use their model, called a microvessel-on-a-chip, to understand angiogenesis better.

"We obtained more insight into how blood vessels form by building our own in the lab from scratch, first forming a collagen mold containing a needle that was then removed, leaving a space that was then colonized by human umbilical vein endothelial cells," corresponding author Yukiko T. Matsunaga says.

"We next examined the effects of EGFL7 by comparing two models of this type, one in which this molecule was allowed to function normally in these cells and another in which it was knocked down by siRNA."

The teams showed that an absence of EGFL7 reduced the sprouting of new blood vessels in the microvessel-on-a-chip in a manner dependent on the molecule VEGF-A. It also led to excessive production of filopodia, which are long slender structures at which new blood vessels normally emerge. Additionally, they showed that the barrier normally formed by the endothelial cells was impaired, resulting in leakage from the vessels.

"These new findings about the importance of EGFL7 could lead to effective therapies for diseases like retinopathy and cancer," lead author Ryo Usuba says. "Our work also shows the advantages of using the microvessel-on-a-chip, both for basic research on the vasculature and in pursuit of other targets of treatment for various vascular disorders."

###

The article "EGFL7 regulates sprouting angiogenesis and endothelial integrity in a human blood vessel model" is published in Biomaterials at doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2019.01.022.

About Institute of Industrial Science (IIS), the University of Tokyo

Institute of Industrial Science (IIS), the University of Tokyo is one of the largest university-attached research institutes in Japan.

More than 120 research laboratories, each headed by a faculty member, comprise IIS, with more than 1,000 members including approximately 300 staff and 700 students actively engaged in education and research. Our activities cover almost all the areas of engineering disciplines. Since its foundation in 1949, IIS has worked to bridge the huge gaps that exist between academic disciplines and real-world applications.

Media Contact

Yukiko Matsunaga
mat@iis.u-tokyo.ac.jp
81-354-526-470

https://www.iis.u-tokyo.ac.jp/en/ 

Yukiko Matsunaga | EurekAlert!
Further information:
https://www.iis.u-tokyo.ac.jp/en/news/3040/
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2019.01.022

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Discovery of a new protein gives insight into a long-standing plant immunity mystery
09.12.2019 | American Phytopathological Society

nachricht How a penalty shootout is decided in the brain
09.12.2019 | Deutsches Primatenzentrum GmbH - Leibniz-Institut für Primatenforschung

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Electronic map reveals 'rules of the road' in superconductor

Band structure map exposes iron selenide's enigmatic electronic signature

Using a clever technique that causes unruly crystals of iron selenide to snap into alignment, Rice University physicists have drawn a detailed map that reveals...

Im Focus: Developing a digital twin

University of Texas and MIT researchers create virtual UAVs that can predict vehicle health, enable autonomous decision-making

In the not too distant future, we can expect to see our skies filled with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) delivering packages, maybe even people, from location...

Im Focus: The coldest reaction

With ultracold chemistry, researchers get a first look at exactly what happens during a chemical reaction

The coldest chemical reaction in the known universe took place in what appears to be a chaotic mess of lasers. The appearance deceives: Deep within that...

Im Focus: How do scars form? Fascia function as a repository of mobile scar tissue

Abnormal scarring is a serious threat resulting in non-healing chronic wounds or fibrosis. Scars form when fibroblasts, a type of cell of connective tissue, reach wounded skin and deposit plugs of extracellular matrix. Until today, the question about the exact anatomical origin of these fibroblasts has not been answered. In order to find potential ways of influencing the scarring process, the team of Dr. Yuval Rinkevich, Group Leader for Regenerative Biology at the Institute of Lung Biology and Disease at Helmholtz Zentrum München, aimed to finally find an answer. As it was already known that all scars derive from a fibroblast lineage expressing the Engrailed-1 gene - a lineage not only present in skin, but also in fascia - the researchers intentionally tried to understand whether or not fascia might be the origin of fibroblasts.

Fibroblasts kit - ready to heal wounds

Im Focus: McMaster researcher warns plastic pollution in Great Lakes growing concern to ecosystem

Research from a leading international expert on the health of the Great Lakes suggests that the growing intensity and scale of pollution from plastics poses serious risks to human health and will continue to have profound consequences on the ecosystem.

In an article published this month in the Journal of Waste Resources and Recycling, Gail Krantzberg, a professor in the Booth School of Engineering Practice...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

The Future of Work

03.12.2019 | Event News

First International Conference on Agrophotovoltaics in August 2020

15.11.2019 | Event News

Laser Symposium on Electromobility in Aachen: trends for the mobility revolution

15.11.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Simple experiment explains magnetic resonance

09.12.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

Electronic map reveals 'rules of the road' in superconductor

09.12.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

Fraunhofer starts development of refrigerant-free, energy-efficient electrocaloric heat pumps

09.12.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>