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Dev Dyn. 2006 Apr;235(4):1014-26.

In vivo and in vitro analysis of the vasculogenic potential of avian proepicardial and epicardial cells.

Author information

1
Department of Animal Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Málaga, Campus de Teatinos s/n, Málaga 29071, Spain.

Abstract

Coronary vessel formation is a special case in the context of embryonic vascular development. A major part of the coronary cellular precursors (endothelial, smooth muscle, and fibroblastic cells) derive from the proepicardium and the epicardium in what can be regarded as a late event of angioblastic and smooth muscle cell differentiation. Thus, coronary morphogenesis is dependent on the epithelial-mesenchymal transformation of the proepicardium and the epicardium. In this study, we present several novel observations about the process of coronary vasculogenesis in avian embryos, namely: (1) The proepicardium displays a high vasculogenic potential, both in vivo (as shown by heterotopic transplants) and in vitro, which is modulated by vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and basic fibroblast growth factor signals; (2) Proepicardial and epicardial cells co-express receptors for platelet-derived growth factor-BB and VEGF; (3) Coronary angioblasts (found all through the epicardial, subepicardial, and compact myocardial layers) express the Wilms' tumor associated transcription factor and the retinoic acid-synthesizing enzyme retinaldehyde-dehydrogenase-2, two markers of the coelomic epithelium involved in coronary endothelium development. All these results contribute to the development of our knowledge on the vascular potential of proepicardial/epicardial cells, the existent interrelationships between the differentiating coronary cell lineages, and the molecular mechanisms involved in the regulation of coronary morphogenesis.

PMID:
16456846
DOI:
10.1002/dvdy.20685
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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