Long-term engraftment of bone marrow-derived cells in the intimal hyperplasia lesion of autologous vein grafts

Yanpeng Diao, Steve Guthrie, Shen Ling Xia, Xiaosen Ouyang, Li Zhang, Jing Xue, Pui Lee, Maria Grant, Edward Scott, Mark S. Segal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Intimal hyperplasia of autologous vein grafts is a critical problem affecting the long-term patency of many types of vascular reconstruction. Within intimal hyperplasia lesions, smooth muscle cells are a major component, playing an essential role in the pathological process. Given that bone marrow-derived cells may differentiate into smooth muscle cells in the neointima of injured arteries, we hypothesized that the bone marrow may serve as a source for some of the smooth muscle cells within intimal hyperplasia lesions of vein grafts. To test this hypothesis, we used an established mouse model for intimal hyperplasia in wild-type mice that had been transplanted with bone marrow from a green fluorescent protein (GFP+/+) transgenic mouse. High-resolution confocal microscopy analysis performed 2 and 8 weeks after grafting demonstrated expression of GFP in 5.4 ± 0.8% and 11.9 ± 2.3%, respectively, of smooth muscle cells within intimal hyperplasia lesions. By 16 weeks, GFP expression in smooth muscle cells was not detected by immunohistochemistry; however, real-time PCR revealed that 20.2 ± 1.7% of the smooth muscle cells captured from the neointima lesion by laser capture microdissection at 16 weeks contained GFP DNA. Our results suggest that bone marrow-derived cells differentiated into smooth muscle cells within the intimal lesion and may provide a novel clinical approach for decreasing intimal hyperplasia in vein grafts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)839-848
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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