The molecular mechanisms underlying vascular regeneration and repair are largely unknown. To gain insight into this process, we developed a method of intima denudation, characterized the progression of endothelial healing, and performed transcriptome analysis over time. Next-generation RNA sequencing (RNAseq) provided a quantitative and unbiased gene expression profile during in vivo regeneration following denudation injury. Our data indicate that shortly after injury, cells immediately adjacent to the wound mount a robust and rapid response with upregulation of genes like Jun, Fos, Myc, as well as cell adhesion genes. This was quickly followed by a wave of proliferative genes. After completion of endothelial healing a vigorous array of extracellular matrix transcripts were upregulated. Gene ontology enrichment and protein network analysis were used to identify transcriptional profiles over time. Further data mining revealed four distinct stages of regeneration: shock, proliferation, acclimation, and maturation. The transcriptional signature of those stages provides insight into the regenerative machinery responsible for arterial repair under normal physiologic conditions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas