The capacity of existing blood vessels to give rise to new blood vessels via endothelial cell sprouting is called angiogenesis and is a well-studied biologic process. In contrast, little is known about the mechanisms for endothelial cell replacement or regeneration within established blood vessels. Since clear definitions exist for identifying cells with stem and progenitor cell properties in many tissues and organs of the body, several groups have begun to accumulate evidence that endothelial stem and progenitor cells exist within the endothelial intima of existing blood vessels. This paper will review stem and progenitor cell definitions and highlight several recent papers purporting to have identified resident vascular endothelial stem and progenitor cells.
- Endothelial progenitor cell
- Endothelial stem cell
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine