alexa Hybrid cell-gene therapy for pulmonary hypertension based on phagocytosing action of endothelial progenitor cells.
Cardiology

Cardiology

Journal of Clinical & Experimental Cardiology

Author(s): Nagaya N, Kangawa K, Kanda M, Uematsu M, Horio T,

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Abstract BACKGROUND: Circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) migrate to injured vascular endothelium and differentiate into mature endothelial cells. We investigated whether transplantation of vasodilator gene-transduced EPCs ameliorates monocrotaline (MCT)-induced pulmonary hypertension in rats. METHODS AND RESULTS: We obtained EPCs from cultured human umbilical cord blood mononuclear cells and constructed plasmid DNA of adrenomedullin (AM), a potent vasodilator peptide. We used cationic gelatin to produce ionically linked DNA-gelatin complexes. Interestingly, EPCs phagocytosed plasmid DNA-gelatin complexes, which allowed nonviral, highly efficient gene transfer into EPCs. Intravenously administered EPCs were incorporated into the pulmonary vasculature of immunodeficient nude rats given MCT. Transplantation of EPCs alone modestly attenuated MCT-induced pulmonary hypertension (16\% decrease in pulmonary vascular resistance). Furthermore, transplantation of AM DNA-transduced EPCs markedly ameliorated pulmonary hypertension in MCT rats (39\% decrease in pulmonary vascular resistance). MCT rats transplanted with AM-expressing EPCs had a significantly higher survival rate than those given culture medium or EPCs alone. CONCLUSIONS: Umbilical cord blood-derived EPCs had a phagocytosing action that allowed nonviral, highly efficient gene transfer into EPCs. Transplantation of AM gene-transduced EPCs caused significantly greater improvement in pulmonary hypertension in MCT rats than transplantation of EPCs alone. Thus, a novel hybrid cell-gene therapy based on the phagocytosing action of EPCs may be a new therapeutic strategy for the treatment of pulmonary hypertension. This article was published in Circulation and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Cardiology

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