Macrophages in angiogenesis

PhD research: Hanna Tay & Charis Du CheyneAbnormale bloedvaten in EGT_TEM beelden.jpg

Blood vessels form the essential route through which oxygen, nutrients waste products and immune cells are transported to and from tissues. New blood vessels grow in developing tissues and in regenerating tissue, such as in wound healing. An essential step in the development of a functional vasculature is the remodeling and maturation of blood capillaries to a hierarchical mature vascular tree. In numerous pathologies, such as chronic inflammation and cancer, blood vessels remain immature and disorganized, leading to tissue death, inflammation and increased metastasis (in TIE2 expressie in EGT.jpgtumours).

Consequently, there is an urgent need to find therapeutic strategies that can normalize the blood vessel network in these pathologies. 

An important pathway during blood vessel maturation is the angiopoietin-TIE signaling complex. The TIE receptors are not only present on the endothelial cells lining blood vessels, but also on macrophages and pericytes that align the bloodvessels. We hypothesize that TIE2 expressing macrophages are important regulators of vascular remodeling and maturation.

We investigate the interaction of blood vessels with macrophages in two settings:

Dysfunctional blood vessels and TIE2 positive macrophages are present in exuberant granulation tissue (EGT) in chronic wounds of horses. We want to investigate the role of these TIE2 expressing macrophages in horse wounds cam embryoand find therapeutic targets to treat these wounds.

Using the chick chorioallantoic membrane model, we study the role of the angiopoietin-TIE2 axis in macrophages on the development of blood vessel.

Contact :