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Respir Res. 2011 Jul 27;12:98. doi: 10.1186/1465-9921-12-98.

Angiogenesis gene expression in murine endothelial cells during post-pneumonectomy lung growth.

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Laboratory of Adaptive and Regenerative Biology, Brigham & Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.


Although blood vessel growth occurs readily in the systemic bronchial circulation, angiogenesis in the pulmonary circulation is rare. Compensatory lung growth after pneumonectomy is an experimental model with presumed alveolar capillary angiogenesis. To investigate the genes participating in murine neoalveolarization, we studied the expression of angiogenesis genes in lung endothelial cells. After left pneumonectomy, the remaining right lung was examined on days 3, 6, 14 and 21 days after surgery and compared to both no surgery and sham thoracotomy controls. The lungs were enzymatically digested and CD31+ endothelial cells were isolated using flow cytometry cell sorting. The transcriptional profile of the CD31+ endothelial cells was assessed using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) arrays. Focusing on 84 angiogenesis-associated genes, we identified 22 genes with greater than 4-fold regulation and significantly enhanced transcription (p <.05) within 21 days of pneumonectomy. Cluster analysis of the 22 genes indicated that changes in gene expression did not occur in a single phase, but in at least four waves of gene expression: a wave demonstrating decreased gene expression more than 3 days after pneumonectomy and 3 sequential waves of increased expression on days 6, 14, and 21 after pneumonectomy. These findings indicate that a network of gene interactions contributes to angiogenesis during compensatory lung growth.

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