Send to

Choose Destination
Brain Res. 2002 Oct 4;951(2):243-54.

A new dynamic in vitro model for the multidimensional study of astrocyte-endothelial cell interactions at the blood-brain barrier.

Author information

Department of Neurological Surgery, Cerebrovascular Research Center, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, NB20, 9500 Euclid Avenue/NB20, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA.


Blood-brain barrier endothelial cells are characterized by the presence of tight intercellular junctions, the absence of fenestrations, and a paucity of pinocytotic vesicles. The in vitro study of the BBB has progressed rapidly over the past several years as new cell culture techniques and improved technologies to monitor BBB function became available. Studies carried out on viable in vitro models are set to accelerate the design of drugs that selectively and aggressively can target the CNS. Several systems in vitro attempt to reproduce the physical and biochemical behavior of intact BBB, but most fail to reproduce the three-dimensional nature of the in vivo barrier and do not allow concomitant exposure of endothelial cells to abluminal (glia) and lumenal (flow) influences. For this purpose, we have developed a new dynamic in vitro BBB model (NDIV-BBB) designed to allow for extensive pharmacological, morphological and physiological studies. Bovine aortic endothelial cells (BAEC) developed robust growth and differentiation when co-cultured alone. In the presence of glial cells, BAEC developed elevated Trans-Endothelial Electrical Resistance (TEER). Excision of individual capillaries proportionally decreased TEER; the remaining bundles were populated with healthy cells. Flow played an essential role in EC differentiation by decreasing cell division. In conclusion, this new dynamic model of the BBB allows for longitudinal studies of the effects of flow and co-culture in a controlled and fully recyclable environment that also permits visual inspection of the abluminal compartment and manipulation of individual capillaries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center