Exposure to platelets promotes functional properties of endothelial progenitor cells

Dorit Leshem-Lev, Alexander Omelchenko, Leor Perl, Ran Kornowski, Alexander Battler, Eli I. Lev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Recent evidence indicates that endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) have an important role in the process of repair following vascular injury, and that platelets mediate their recruitment to sites of injury. Platelets and EPCs can interact and bind directly. However, there is limited information on the effect of platelets on EPC function following this interaction. We, therefore, aimed to assess the in vitro effect of platelets on functional properties of EPCs. Human EPCs were isolated from donated Buffy coats and purified on a magnetic separation columnspecific for CD133. They were incubated either on fibronectin matrix, or co-incubated with washed platelets (isolated from healthy volunteers), for 7 days. Number of EPC colony forming units (CFU) was quantified, and endothelial cell lineage confirmed by immunostaining. Functional properties of the cultured cells were evaluated by MTT-proliferation assay and migration assay using the Boyden chamber. Co-incubation of EPCs with platelets compared to incubation of EPCs alone (on fibronectin matrix) resulted in higher number of CFUs after 7 days (6.5 ± 1.3 vs. 3.5 ± 0.5 CFUs/well, respectively, P = 0.005). In addition, co-incubation of EPCs with platelets versus EPCs alone was associated with higher proportion of living cells, by the MTT assay (0.2 ± 0.01 vs. 0.12 ± 0.04 MTT 570 nm respectively, P = 0.003), and higher number of migrated EPCs, assessed by the migration assay (1400 ± 212 vs. 580 ± 180 migrated cells/2000 cells, respectively, P<0.0001). In vitro exposure to platelets promotes the capacity of EPCs to form colonies, proliferate and migrate. Therefore, the interaction with platelets appears to augment EPC functional properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)398-403
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Thrombosis and Thrombolysis
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Endothelial progenitor cells
  • Interaction
  • Platelets

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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