Abstract # 2989 Event # 51:

Scheduled for Saturday, September 17, 2011 04:15 PM-04:35 PM: Session 10 (Salon F (Sixth Floor)) Oral Presentation


ENDOTHELIAL CELL GENE EXPRESSION AND STEM CELL THERAPIES IN RELATION TO CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE

J. L. VandeBerg1,2, Q. Shi1,2, D. L. Rainwater1, M. C. Mahaney1,2, V. Hodara1,2 and X. L. Wang1
1Baylor College of Medicine, P.O. Box 760549, San Antonio, Texas 78245-0549, USA, 2Southwest National Primate Research Center
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Over three decades, we have established the baboon (an admixed population of Papio hamadryas anubis and P.h. cynocephalus) as a model for research on risk factors of atherosclerosis. Recently, we initiated studies of the genetic control of endothelial cell (EC) responses to circulating risk factors, and of stem cell therapies for treating vascular injuries and damaged endothelium. To test the hypothesis that genetic variation in EC responses contributes to variability in risk of atherosclerosis, we cultured ECs from arteries of pedigreed baboons, subjected them to stimulation with TNF-?, an inflammatory cytokine that contributes to atherogenesis, and quantified various responses. Significant heritabilities were observed for interleukin-8 released into the culture medium, E-selectin levels in EC lysate, vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 expression on EC surfaces, and a measure of cell growth rate. To develop a model system for research on the treatment of vascular injuries and damaged endothelium, we induced baboon embryonic stem cells (ESCs) to differentiate into endothelial cells. Using a bioreactor for ex vivo experiments on segments of baboon arteries, we seeded baboon arteries that had been stripped of ECs with ESC-derived angioblasts and demonstrated that functional endothelium could be reconstituted in 5 days. This model system holds great promise for contributing to the development of an effective stem cell therapy.