EphrinB2 Stabilizes Vascularlike Structures Generated by Endothelial Cells and Stem Cells from Apical Papilla

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This study aimed to investigate the roles of ephrinB2 in stabilizing vascularlike structures generated by stem cells from apical papilla (SCAPs) and human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs).


HUVECs were seeded alone or with SCAPs concurrently or 12 hours later. Angiogenesis and ephrinB2 phosphorylation were assayed at different time points. Additionally, ephrinB2 expression in SCAPs and HUVECs was silenced with small interfering RNA, and vascularlike structure formation within coculture was assessed; 1 × 105 HUVECs were seeded in transwell inserts, and 6 × 105 SCAPs were plated in lower wells with or without ephrinB2-Fc. Migratory cells were stained and counted. Delayed addition of ephrinB2-Fc to the coculture of HUVECs and SCAPs was performed to evaluate the role of ephrinB2 on the stabilization of vascularlike structures.


Concurrent coculture of SCAPs and HUVECs yielded significantly longer tubule lengths at 4, 8, and 12 hours (P < .05). Delayed addition of SCAPs to coculture with HUVECs resulted in vascularlike structures persisting longer than the HUVEC monoculture. Western blot confirmed that ephrinB2 phosphorylation was initiated at 0.5 hours of coculture and peaked at 1 hour. Silencing ephrinB2 expression in SCAPs and HUVECs resulted in the absence of vascularlike structures. Enhanced migration of HUVECs by SCAPs could be inhibited by ephrinB2-Fc. When ephrinB2-Fc was added at 3 hours of coculture, the vascularlike structures were stabilized for more than 12 hours as compared with 9 hours in the control group.


EphrinB2 plays an important role in the stabilization of vascularlike structures generated by HUVECs and SCAPs.

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