5 years ago

Fibrocartilage Stem Cells Engraft and Self-Organize into Vascularized Bone.

Nathan, Shawber, Pylawka, Embree, Soharby, Ruscitto
Angiogenesis is a complex, multicellular process that is critical for bone development and generation. Endochondral ossification depends on an avascular cartilage template that completely remodels into vascularized bone and involves a dynamic interplay among chondrocytes, osteoblasts, and endothelial cells. We have discovered fibrocartilage stem cells (FCSCs) derived from the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) mandibular condyle that generates cartilage anlagen, which is subsequently remodeled into vascularized bone using an ectopic transplantation model. Here we explore FCSC and endothelial cell interactions during vascularized bone formation. We found that a single FCSC colony formed transient cartilage and host endothelial cells may participate in bone angiogenesis upon subcutaneous transplantation in a nude mouse. FCSCs produced an abundance of the proangiogenic growth factor vascular endothelial growth factor A and promoted the proliferation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Using a fibrinogen gel bead angiogenesis assay experiment, FCSC cell feeder layer induced HUVECs to form significantly shorter and less sprouts than D551 fibroblast controls, suggesting that FCSCs may initially inhibit angiogenesis to allow for avascular cartilage formation. Conversely, direct FCSC-HUVEC contact significantly enhanced the osteogenic differentiation of FCSCs. To corroborate this idea, upon transplantation of FCSCs into a bone defect microenvironment, FCSCs engrafted and regenerated intramembranous bone. Taken together, we demonstrate that the interactions between FCSCs and endothelial cells are essential for FCSC-derived vascularized bone formation. A comprehensive understanding of the environmental cues that regulate FCSC fate decisions may contribute to deciphering the mechanisms underlying the role of FCSCs in regulating bone formation.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1177/0022034517735094

DOI: 10.1177/0022034517735094

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