Expression and function of a recombinant PDGF B gene in porcine arteries

Vincent J. Pompili, David Gordon, Hong San, Zhiyong Yang, David W.M. Muller, Gary J. Nabel, Elizabeth G. Nabel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Platelet derived growth factor (PDGF) B is a mitogen and chemoattractant for smooth muscle cells in vitro, and expression of a recombinant PDGF B gene in porcine arteries stimulates intimal thickening. To define the mechanisms by which PDGF B gene expression induces intimal thickening in vivo, we examined its effects on smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration, extracellular matrix synthesis, and inflammatory cell infiltration in intimal lesions of pig arteries after direct gene transfer of a recombinant PDGF B gone. PDGF B gent expression was associated with rapid formation of an intima, including 3- to 10-fold increases in intimal thickness and intima- to-media area ratio 4 to 21 days after gene transfer compared with control transfected arteries. Intimal smooth muscle cell proliferation was detected at 2 days, peaked at 7 days (P<.01), and declined by 14 days, although the total number of intimal nuclei progressively increased to 21 days (P<.01). Calculations of expected-to-observed ratios of intimal cells, based on BrdC proliferation indexes, demonstrated that the increases in intimal cell number on days 2 through 7 could not be accounted for by proliferation alone, suggesting that recombinant PDGF BB acts to stimulate cell proliferation and migration of smooth muscle cells into the intima. Extracellular matrix deposition and procollagen synthesis were observed after 7 days (P<.01) and were associated with a decline in cell density in the intima, suggesting that extracellular matrix synthesis may contribute to progressive intimal thickening in response to PDGF B gene expression. There was minimal accumulation of inflammatory cells, including macrophages and CD3(+) lymphocytes, in transfected arteries. These data suggest that PDGF B gene expression promotes intimal expansion by both proliferation and migration of smooth muscle cells foilowed by synthesis of extracellular matrix and therefore acts through several mechanisms to play a role in the pathogenesis of intimal lesions in vivo.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2254-2264
Number of pages11
JournalArteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1995


  • PDGF B gene
  • cell proliferation
  • gene expression
  • gene transfer
  • neointima

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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