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J Biomed Opt. 2008 Nov-Dec;13(6):064017. doi: 10.1117/1.3028010.

Quantitative and morphometric evaluation of the angiogenic effects of leptin.

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Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Department of Surgery, Engineered Wound Repair Laboratory, 8700 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles, California 90048, USA.


Angiogenesis is a dynamic process that requires an interaction of pro-and antiangiogenic factors. It is known that the cytokine leptin stimulates endothelial cell growth and angiogenesis, but further quantitative analysis is necessary to understand leptin angiogenic effects. The quail chorioallantoic membrane (CAM) assay has been used to study angiogenesis in vivo by focusing on morphometric parameters that quantify vascular complexity and density. We quantify the angiogenic activity of leptin using the CAM assay by digital morphometry and a computer-assisted image analysis to evaluate more precisely vessel length, diameter, branching, and tortuousity. CAM images are obtained from ex ovo cultures of E8-E9 quail embryos. MATLAB and custom software are used for our analysis. The effects of leptin, vascular endothelial growth factor-165 (VEGF(165)), and their corresponding neutralizing antibodies are compared. Our results show that CAM treated with leptin and VEGF(165) has a significant increase in vascular complexity and density. A corresponding decrease is observed using neutralizing antibodies. Notably, leptin induced more significant changes than VEGF in vessel length and tortuousity. Conversely, VEGF induced a greater increase in vessel branching than leptin. These results underscore the importance of using multiparametric quantitative methods to assess several aspects of angiogenesis and enable us to understand the proangiogenic effects of leptin.

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