Generation of a Novel In Vitro Model to Study Endothelial Dysfunction from Atherothrombotic Specimens

Susan Gallogly, Takeshi Fujisawa, John D Hung, Mairi Brittan, Elizabeth M Skinner, Andrew J Mitchell, Claire Medine, Neus Luque, Erika Zodda, Marta Cascante, Patrick W Hadoke, Nicholas L Mills, Olga Tura-Ceide

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

PURPOSE: Endothelial dysfunction is central to the pathogenesis of acute coronary syndrome. The study of diseased endothelium is very challenging due to inherent difficulties in isolating endothelial cells from the coronary vascular bed. We sought to isolate and characterise coronary endothelial cells from patients undergoing thrombectomy for myocardial infarction to develop a patient-specific in vitro model of endothelial dysfunction.

METHODS: In a prospective cohort study, 49 patients underwent percutaneous coronary intervention with thrombus aspiration. Specimens were cultured, and coronary endothelial outgrowth (CEO) cells were isolated. CEO cells, endothelial cells isolated from peripheral blood, explanted coronary arteries, and umbilical veins were phenotyped and assessed functionally in vitro and in vivo.

RESULTS: CEO cells were obtained from 27/37 (73%) atherothrombotic specimens and gave rise to cells with cobblestone morphology expressing CD146 (94 ± 6%), CD31 (87 ± 14%), and von Willebrand factor (100 ± 1%). Proliferation of CEO cells was impaired compared to both coronary artery and umbilical vein endothelial cells (population doubling time, 2.5 ± 1.0 versus 1.6 ± 0.3 and 1.2 ± 0.3 days, respectively). Cell migration was also reduced compared to umbilical vein endothelial cells (29 ± 20% versus 85±19%). Importantly, unlike control endothelial cells, dysfunctional CEO cells did not incorporate into new vessels or promote angiogenesis in vivo.

CONCLUSIONS: CEO cells can be reliably isolated and cultured from thrombectomy specimens in patients with acute coronary syndrome. Compared to controls, patient-derived coronary endothelial cells had impaired capacity to proliferate, migrate, and contribute to angiogenesis. CEO cells could be used to identify novel therapeutic targets to enhance endothelial function and prevent acute coronary syndromes.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCardiovascular Drugs and Therapy
Early online date20 Feb 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Feb 2021


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