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Researchers at Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) have shown that optical modulation can be exploited to directly control the fate of a progenitor cell population to facilitate the formation of new blood vessels. The researchers combined the use of photosensitive, biocompatible polymers with visible light excitation to gain optical control of cell fate.
The team focused on endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) and, in particular, on endothelial colony-forming cells (ECFCs). ECFCs were mobilized from a bone marrow and vascular stem cell niche to reconstruct the vascular network destroyed by an ischemic insult and to restore local blood perfusion. The in vitro activation of ECFC angiogenic activity was made possible by the use of a…READ MORE