It is a widely accepted view that vascular repair results from migration and proliferation of adjacent vascular cells. On the other hand, accumulating evidence suggests that bone marrow cells can give rise to endothelial-like cells and smooth muscle-like cells that potentially contribute to vascular healing, remodeling and lesion formation under physiological and pathological conditions. However, some recent reports indicated controversial results and cast a doubt on the specificity of the method to detect differentiation of ectopic cells. Here, we overview recent findings on the role of vascular progenitor cells in cardiovascular diseases and provide possible explanation why different conclusions have been drawn from different animal experiments.
Keywords: Vascular progenitor cells, endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), smooth muscle progenitor cells (SMPCs), injury, repair
Rights & PermissionsPrintExport