PloS one

Chemokine Ligand 5 (CCL5) Derived from Endothelial Colony-Forming Cells (ECFCs) Mediates Recruitment of Smooth Muscle Progenitor Cells (SPCs) toward Critical Vascular Locations in Moyamoya Disease.

PMID 28072843


The etiology and pathogenesis of moyamoya disease (MMD) are still obscure. Previous studies indicated that angiogenic chemokines may play an important role in the pathogenesis of the disease. Recently, it was discovered that peripheral blood-derived endothelial colony-forming cells (ECFCs) and smooth muscle progenitor cells (SPCs) have defective functions in MMD patients. Therefore, the interaction of ECFCs and SPCs, the precursors of two crucial cellular components of vascular walls, with some paracrine molecules is an intriguing subject. In this study, co-culture of ECFCs and SPCs from MMD patients and healthy normal subjects revealed that MMD ECFCs, not SPCs, are responsible for the defective functions of both ECFCs and SPCs. Enhanced migration of SPCs toward MMD ECFCs supported the role for some chemokines secreted by MMD ECFCs. Expression arrays of MMD and normal ECFCs suggested that several candidate cytokines differentially produced by MMD ECFCs. We selected chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 6 (CXCR6), interleukin-8 (IL8), chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (CCL2), and CCL5 for study, based on the relatively higher expression of these ligands in MMD ECFCs and their cognate receptors in MMD SPCs. Migration assays showed that only CCL5 significantly augmented the migration activities of SPCs toward ECFCs. Treatment with siRNA for the CCL5 receptor (CCR5) abrogated the effect, confirming that CCL5 is responsible for the interaction of MMD ECFCs and SPCs. These data indicate that ECFCs, not SPCs, are the major players in MMD pathogenesis and that the chemokine CCL5 mediates the interactions. It can be hypothesized that in MMD patients, defective ECFCs direct aberrant SPC recruitment to critical vascular locations through the action of CCL5.

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