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A novel therapeutic advancement in the search for heart muscle progenitor cells
Date:11/26/2012

nd other animals. There has been a significant amount of research effort towards discovering a path for the clinical application of these cells in patients. The reason for the lack of success is that the markers that help to identify CPCs, such as Islet1 or Nkx2.5, are located in the nucleus of the cells. The use of these cell markers modifies the cells rendering them therapeutically unusable, making the identification of safe cell-surface markers essential.

Surface markers identified for cardiovascular progenitor cells

On this task, the research team of Professor Katja Schenke-Layland from the Fraunhofer IGB in Stuttgart, Prof. Dr. Robb MacLellan and Dr. Ali Nsair of the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), where Schenke-Layland previously worked before returning to Germany to join the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft's Attract Program, focused their research. With success: They were able to identify two markers, the receptors Flt1 (VEGFR1) and Flt4 (VEGFR3), on the surface of CPCs with which these cells can be clearly identified while fully preserving their biological function. This discovery allows scientists to isolate clinically relevant cardiovascular progenitor cells that can be functionally matured.

In the search for surface markers, the researchers investigated the cardiovascular progenitor cells using microarray gene expression profiling. These studies show exactly which genes are active at a specific point in time. The resulting data from this analysis were compared to the sequencing data from existing databases of already known as cell markers.

From induced-pluripotent stem cells, cardiovascular progenitor cells are developed

Encouraged by the success of being able to identify and isolate living CPCs, the researchers sought out to derive the cells from induced-pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. For this purpose, they used a method for which the Japanese scientist Shinya Yamanaka was recently awarded th
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Contact: Katja Schenke-Layland
katja.schenke-layland@igb.fraunhofer.de
49-711-970-4082
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

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