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Biochem Soc Trans. 2009 Aug;37(Pt 4):805-10. doi: 10.1042/BST0370805.

Angioplasticity in asthma.

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Department of Pathobiology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA.


Plasticity of the lung vasculature is intrinsically more complex than other organs due to the presence of two blood supply systems under different arterial pressures, the pulmonary and bronchial arterial systems. The bronchial and pulmonary circulations may both contribute to vascular remodelling in lungs after injury or inflammation. Vascular remodelling in the airway is a long recognized component in asthma. Growing numbers of reports suggest that a pro-angiogenic milieu is not a consequence of, but rather dictates the chronic inflammation of asthma. The fairly recent discovery of EPCs (endothelial progenitor cells) has enabled us to study the bone-marrow-derived cells that regulate lung vascular plasticity in asthma. This mini review provides a concise synopsis of our present knowledge about vascular plasticity in adult lungs, summarizes our current view of angioplasticity in asthma and highlights yet unresolved areas of potential interest.

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