Abstract 19131: Stent-Based Vascular Cell Delivery for Therapeutic VEGF-Induced Angiogenesis
Site specific targeting remains an elusive goal for stem cell and gene therapies in the cardiovascular field. One promising option involves use of modified 3D stent designs that deliver larger cell/gene payloads to specific disease sites using the versatility of percutaneous vascular access. Here, we engineered smooth muscle cells (SMCs) placed in a 3D metallic stent scaffold to deliver high local concentrations of an angiogenic gene (VEGF165) in a porcine model of chronic total occlusion involving ameroid placement on the proximal left circumflex (LCx) artery(n≥8 per group). Engineered SMCs were retained within the mesh stent structure (479 ± 47.4 SMC/mm2) and were competent for VEGF production in vitro (8.8 ± 1.8 ng/ml in media). Following implantation, micro CT analyses revealed that stents loaded with VEGF producing SMCs significantly enhanced vasa vasora microvessel density (5.43 ± 0.46 vs 2.14 ± 0.19 vessels/mm2, p<0.001) with a concomitant increase in tissue VEGF protein levels (277.9 ± 85.7 vs 18.8 ± 4.4 pg/mg protein, p<0.0001). Formation of endothelial cell colonies from peripheral blood mononuclear cells was significantly increased with the implantation of VEGF-secreting cells suggesting increased angiogenic potential (7.0 ± 2.0 versus 41.6 ± 4.5, EC:CFU p<0.0001). VEGF secreting mesh stent placement enhanced regional blood flow analyses determined by microsphere analyses as well as improving regional wall motion in the LCx-related territory (p<0.05) as well as left ventricular function assessed in terms of ejection fraction (34.2 ± 6.7% vs 61.2 ± 5.2% P<0.001) and dp/dt (p<0.001) Our data indicate robust clinically relevant angiogenesis can be achieved in a human scale porcine chronic vascular occlusion model following stent based delivery of angiogenic cells. This may have implications for percutaneous delivery of stem cells, genes and secreted therapeutic factors in cardiovascular disease in general and in creation of percutaneous microvascular bypass networks in the setting of chronic vaso-occlusive disease in particular.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.