Endothelial cells (ECs) for vascular tissue engineering: venous ECs are less thrombogenic than arterial ECs

I. L. A. Geenen, D. G. M. Molin, N. M. S. van den Akker, F. Jeukens, H. M. Spronk, G. W. H. Schurink, M. J. Post*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

13 Citations (Web of Science)


Primary endothelial cells (ECs) are the preferred cellular source for luminal seeding of tissue-engineered (TE) vascular grafts. Research into the potential of ECs for vascular TE has focused particularly on venous rather than arterial ECs. In this study we evaluated the functional characteristics of arterial and venous ECs, relevant for vascular TE. Porcine ECs were isolated from femoral artery (PFAECs) and vein (PFVECs). The proliferation rate was comparable for both EC sources, whereas migration, determined through a wound-healing assay, was less profound for PFVECs. EC adhesion was lower for PFVECs on collagen I, measured after 10min of arterial shear stress. Gene expression was analysed by qRT-PCR for ECs cultured under static conditions and after exposure to arterial shear stress and revealed differences in gene expression, with lower expression of EphrinB2 and VCAM-1 and higher levels of vWF and COUP-TFII in PFVECs than in PFAECs. PFVECs exhibited diminished platelet adhesion under flow and cell-based thrombin generation was delayed for PFVECs, indicating diminished tissue factor (TF) activity. After stimulation, prostacyclin secretion, but not nitric oxide (NO), was lower in PFVECs. Our data support the use of venous ECs for TE because of their beneficial antithrombogenic profile.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)564-576
JournalJournal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2015


  • vascular tissue engineering
  • endothelial cells
  • cell source
  • cell culture
  • thrombogenicity
  • arterial-venous differences

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