Cerebral aneurysms are characterized by disruption of the internal elastic lamina (IEL), phenotypic modulation of smooth muscle cells (SMCs), apoptosis of mural cells
, and extracellular matrix (ECM) degradation, which are considered as the hallmarks of CA .
Arboleda's team studied the importance of mural cells
in vascular integrity and mural cell
loss, a known characteristic of CADASIL and other small vessel diseases, in Notch3 knockout mice.
Interestingly, it has variously been shown that mural cells
, such as mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), or fibroblasts further promote the vascularization process [9, 10, 13, 15].
Furthermore, T[beta]4 was shown to facilitate angiogenic sprouting, by activating SRF target genes via the nuclear translocation of MRTF-A , and to foster the attachment of mural cells
to endothelial cell tubes, improving the functionality of vessels [12,13].
Recent data from our team and others drew new attention on a discrete population of mesenchymal cells that wraps around vessels, variously called mural cells
, perivascular cells or pericytes, as a major source for profibrotic stromal cells generating scar tissue.
Perivascular mural cells
of the mouse choroid demonstrate morphological diversity that is correlated to vasoregulatory function.
As in normal blood vessels, tumor vessels consist of endothelial cells, mural cells
(pericytes and smooth muscle cells), and basement membrane (Baluk et al.
On the other hand, it is known that apoptosis can occur in at least four different follicular compartments, theca cells, mural cells
, cumulus cells and in the oocyte (12) and that ovarian follicles with identical morphology have different apoptosis levels in mural granulosa and cumulus cells (25).
The specific morphology of the putative FDC precursor cells suggested that they be identical with mural cells
, pluripotent cells which decorate vessel walls.
Paolo Madeddu, chair of experimental cardiovascular medicine in the School of Clinical Sciences at the University of Bristol and colleagues in the Bristol Heart Institute, looked at whether human mural cells
, known to scientists as pericytes, can stabilize blood vessels after a heart attack.
Vascular formation is coordinated in several modes comprising vasculogenesis--primitive vascular labyrinth assembly, angiogenesis--vascular sprouting and branching, and arteriogenesis--endothelial cell tubules covered by vascular mural cells
Microvascular pericytes (PCs), a set of perivascular mural cells
surrounding the intima of microvessels and capillaries, are traditionally regarded as a structural component of blood vessels, regulating vascular contractility, stability, and integrity [51,52].