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Tissue Cell. 2013 Aug;45(4):253-60. doi: 10.1016/j.tice.2013.03.001. Epub 2013 May 3.

Ascorbate enhances elastin synthesis in 3D tissue-engineered pulmonary fibroblasts constructs.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, United States.


Extracellular matrix remodeling is a continuous process that is critical to maintaining tissue homeostasis, and alterations in this process have been implicated in chronic diseases such as atherosclerosis, lung fibrosis, and emphysema. Collagen and elastin are subject to ascorbate-dependent hydroxylation. While this post-translational modification in collagen is critical for function, the role of hydroxylation of elastin is not well understood. A number of studies have indicated that ascorbate leads to reduced elastin synthesis. However, these studies were limited to analysis of cells grown under traditional 2D tissue culture conditions. To investigate this process we evaluated elastin and collagen synthesis in primary rat neonatal pulmonary fibroblasts in response to ascorbate treatment in traditional 2D culture and within 3D cross-linked gelatin matrices (Gelfoam). We observed little change in elastin or collagen biosynthesis in standard 2D cultures treated with ascorbate, yet observed a dramatic increase in elastin protein and mRNA levels in response to ascorbate in 3D cell-Gelfoam constructs. These data suggest that the cell-ECM architecture dictates pulmonary cell response to ascorbate, and that approaches aimed toward stimulating ECM repair or engineering functional cell-derived matrices should consider all aspects of the cellular environment.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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