BACKGROUND: Fucoidan, a new low molecular weight sulfated polysaccharide (LMWF), has previously been shown to mobilize bone marrow-derived progenitors cells via stimulation of stromal derived factor (SDF)-1 release. Mobilized progenitor cells have been suggested to repair intimal lesions after immune-mediated endothelial injury and thus prevent intimal proliferation. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of LMWF treatment in a rat aortic allograft model of transplant arteriosclerosis (TA).
METHODS: Aortic grafts were performed in Brown Norway (BN, donor) and Lewis (Lew, recipient) rats. The recipient rats were treated with LMWF (5 mg/kg/day) and sacrificed at 30 days. To determine the role of SDF-1 in mediating the effects of LMWF, a specific inhibitor of the SDF-1 receptor CXCR4, AMD 3100 (20 microg/kg/day), was used. The grafted segments were evaluated by morphometric (histochemical) analyses.
RESULTS: Untreated aortic allografts exhibited severe intimal proliferation, indicative of TA. In contrast, LMWF treatment significantly prevented allograft intimal proliferation as compared with controls (5.7+/-3 vs. 66.2+/-6 microm, P
CONCLUSIONS: We found that LMWF treatment reduced intimal thickness and induced the presence of an endothelial cell lining in the vascular graft at 30 days. Our findings may suggest a novel therapeutic strategy in the prevention of TA.
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