This is a method for recruiting circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) to a site of injury in order to assist with tissue regeneration, tissue remodeling, and tumor resection. It potentially offers a treatment for various diseases such as ischemia, diabetic retinopathy, and cancer.
EPCs are bone marrow-derived cells with the ability to differentiate into multiple cell lines. During tissue repair, they have a direct structural role of differentiating into mature endothelial cells and an indirect role of secreting angiogenic factors. Current techniques to induce the recruitment of EPCs in the circulating blood have shown marginal success. Most of these techniques utilize injections of single active agents that fail to effectively recruit EPCs and express poor time residency at the site of injection. This invention utilizes a three-dimensional platform technology combining polymeric materials and endothelial cells to induce mobilization of EPCs and to recruit them to a site of injury more effectively than current techniques while showing excellent time residency.
This invention is a three-dimensional matrix with embedded endothelial cells that would be implanted at, or near, the site of injury. The implanted endothelial cells induce secreted factors, such as miRNA, SDF-1, HGF, PDGF, TIMP-1, and TIMP-2, in order to recruit EPCs to the site of injury. The matrix is made of biocompatible polymeric materials such as denatured collagen, and the diameter of its pores range on the order of 100 µm. The endothelial cells attach to the matrix materials through naturally occurring focal adhesion complexes.
- Recruits EPCs for tissue repair
- Excellent time residency