Angiogenic T-Cells and Putative Endothelial Progenitor Cells in Hypertension-Related Cerebral Small Vessel Disease

Rob P. W. Rouhl*, Annelien E. C. S. Mertens, Robert J. van Oostenbrugge, Jan G. M. C. Damoiseaux, Lucienne L. Debrus-Palmans, Leon H. G. Henskens, Abraham A. Kroon, Peter W. de Leeuw, Jan Lodder, Jan Willem Cohen Tervaert

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background and Purpose-Cerebral small vessel disease (CSVD) may be caused by endothelial dysfunction, whereas endothelial progenitor cells (EPC) may attenuate endothelial dysfunction. Their vitality is lower in CSVD. A subset of lymphocytes, angiogenic T-cells, is capable to stimulate EPC function. The purpose of our study was to explore the relation between CSVD manifestations, angiogenic T-cells, and EPC in hypertensive patients with CSVD. Methods-We compared 32 essential hypertensive patients with CSVD (white matter lesions, asymptomatic lacunar infarcts, or microbleeds on 1.5-Tesla MRI) to 29 age-matched and sex-matched hypertensive controls. We counted angiogenic T-cells (CD3(+)/CD31(+)/CD184(+)) and putative EPC (CD31(+)/CD34(+)/CD45(-)/KDR(+)) by flow cytometry and determined EPC vitality by in vitro cluster formation. Results-Putative EPC numbers were lower in hypertensive individuals with CSVD than in those without (10 +/- 7.10(3)/mL versus 13 +/- 6.10(3)/mL [median +/- interquartile range]; P=0.011). Angiogenic T-cell numbers were also lower in hypertensive individuals with CSVD than in those without (0.56 +/- 0.25.10(9)/mL versus 0.78 +/- 0.50.10(9)/mL; P=0.008). Higher angiogenic T-cell numbers independently related to absence of CSVD (odds ratio, 0.088; 95% confidence interval, 0.012-0.627). Conclusions-Our data suggest that angiogenic T-cells and putative EPC independently relate to radiological CSVD manifestations in hypertensive patients. (Stroke. 2012;43:256-258.)
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)256-U509
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012


  • endothelial progenitor cells
  • hypertension
  • leukoaraiosis
  • T-lymphocytes
  • white matter lesions

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