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Stem Cells Dev. 2019 Sep 15;28(18):1214-1223. doi: 10.1089/scd.2019.0106. Epub 2019 Aug 1.

Comparison of Human Tissue Microarray to Human Pericyte Transcriptome Yields Novel Perivascular Cell Markers.

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Department of Pathology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland.
Center for Cardiovascular Science, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.
MRC Center for Regenerative Medicine, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.
Orthopaedic Hospital Research Center, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California.


Human perivascular progenitor cells, including pericytes, are well-described multipotent mesenchymal cells giving rise to mesenchymal stem cells in culture. Despite the unique location of pericytes, specific antigens to distinguish human pericytes from other cell types are few. Here, we employed a human tissue microarray (Human Protein Atlas) to identify proteins that are strongly and specifically expressed in a pericytic location within human adipose tissue. Next, these results were cross-referenced with RNA sequencing data from human adipose tissue pericytes, as defined as a fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS) purified CD146+CD34-CD31-CD45- cell population. Results showed that from 105,532 core biopsies of soft tissue, 229 proteins showed strong and specific perivascular immunoreactivity, the majority of which (155) were present in the tunica intima. Next, cross-referencing with the transcriptome of FACS-derived CD146+ pericytes yielded 25 consistently expressed genes/proteins, including 18 novel antigens. A majority of these transcripts showed maintained expression after culture propagation (56% of genes). Interestingly, many novel antigens within pericytes are regulators of osteogenic differentiation. In sum, our study demonstrates the existence of novel pericyte markers, some of which are conserved in culture that may be useful for future efforts to typify, isolate, and characterize human pericytes.


mesenchymal stem cell; pericyte; pericyte markers

[Available on 2020-09-15]

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