Angiogenic potential of human Dental Pulp Stromal (STEM) Cells

C. Marchionni, L. Bonsi, F. Alviano, G. Lanzoni, A. Di Tullio, R. Costa, M. Montanari, P. L. Tazzari, F. Ricci, G. Pasquinelli, C. Orrico, A. Grossi, C. Prati, Gian Paolo Bagnara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Dental pulp is a heterogeneous microenviroment where unipotent progenitor and pluripotent mesenchymal stem cells cohabit. In this study we investigated whether human Dental Pulp Stromal (Stem) Cells (DP-SCs) committed to the angiogenic fate. DP-SCs showed the specific mesenchymal immunophenotypical profile positive for CD29, CD44, CD73, CD105, CD166 and negative for CD14, CD34, CD45, in accordance with that reported for bone marrow-derived SCs. The Oct-4 expression in DP-SCs, evaluated through RT-PCR analysis, increased in relation with the number of the passages in cell culture and decreased after angiogenic induction. In agreement with their multipotency, DP-SCs differentiated toward osteogenic and adipogenic commitments. In angiogenic experiments, differentiation of DP-SCs, through Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) induction, was evaluated by in vitro matrigel assay and by cytometric analysis. Accordingly, endothelial-specific markers like Flt-1 and KDR were basally expressed and they increased after exposure to VEGF together with the occurrence of ICAM-1 and von Willebrand Factor positive cells. In addition, VEGF-induced DP-SCs maintained endothelial cell-like features when cultured in a 3-D fibrin mesh, displaying focal organization into capillary-like structures. The DP-SC angiogenic potential may prove a remarkable tool for novel approaches to developing tissue-engineered vascular grafts which are useful when vascularization of ischemic tissues is required.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)699-706
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Angiogenesis
  • Dental pulp
  • Stem cells
  • VEGF

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology


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