Role of blood vessel maturation during heart ontogeny

University of Edinburgh

Past award

Student: Jemma Makepeace : University of Leeds

Year Award Started: 2017

Acute myocardial infarction (MI) leads to ischaemic cell death and scar formation in the adult myocardium. Promotion of revascularisation in the infarct and peri-infarcted areas improves cardiac performance. De novo blood vessel formation requires endothelial cell proliferation and migration, tube formation and pericyte recruitment leading to vessel maturation. Platelet derived growth factor (PDGF-B) retention motif is required for the proper recruitment of pericyte (which express PDGFR-β, PDGF-B receptor) to the blood vessel wall and their direct interaction with endothelial cells. It is not known whether this is required for the cardiac blood vessel formation and maturation during development. In this study, we aim to investigate for the first time the in vivo requirement for blood vessel maturation in the developing heart. This pathway may have potential for targeted therapeutic intervention to enhance vessel maturation or to retain the existing vessels in the damaged heart thus limiting the infarct size post-MI.

Research area: Cardiovascular conditions


Dr Mihaela Crisan
BHF Centre for Cardiovascular Science