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 World’s Largest Study on Allergic Rhinitis Reveals new Risk Genes
17.07.2018 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

nachricht Plant mothers talk to their embryos via the hormone auxin
17.07.2018 | Institute of Science and Technology Austria

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Behavior-influencing policies are critical for mass market success of low carbon vehicles

17.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Plant mothers talk to their embryos via the hormone auxin

17.07.2018 | Life Sciences

Subaru Telescope helps pinpoint origin of ultra-high energy neutrino

16.07.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>