Human Endothelial Progenitor Cells Tolerate Oxidative Stress Due to Intrinsically High Expression of Manganese Superoxide Dismutase
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Objective— Endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) display a unique aptitude to promote angiogenesis and restore endothelial function of injured vessels. How progenitor cells can execute a regenerative program in the unfavorable environment of injury/inflammation-induced oxidative stress is poorly understood. We hypothesized that EPCs are resistant to oxidative stress and that this resistance is due to high expression and activity of antioxidant enzymes.
Methods and Results— EPCs outgrown from human blood of healthy subjects demonstrated a marked resistance to cytotoxic effect of LY83583 (an generator), tumor necrosis factor-α, and serum depletion. LY83583 inhibited in vitro tube formation by human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and human coronary artery endothelial cells (CAECs), but not by EPCs. Compared with HUVECs and CAECs, EPCs exhibited ≈3- to 4-fold higher expression and activity of manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD), but not copper zinc superoxide dismutase (CuZnSOD) or catalase. The antioxidant profile in EPCs was associated with preservation of the mitochondrial network when exposed to LY83583. Moreover, cytotoxic effects of LY83583 on CAECs and HUVECs were reversed by adenoviral overexpression of MnSOD.
Conclusions— Human EPCs are resistant to oxidative stress. High intrinsic expression of MnSOD is a critical mechanism protecting EPCs against oxidative stress.
- Received April 2, 2004.
- Accepted July 26, 2004.