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Complementary Density Gradient of Poly(hydroxyethyl methacrylate) and YIGSR Selectively Guides Migration of Endotheliocytes

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posted on 09.06.2014 by Tanchen Ren, Shan Yu, Zhengwei Mao, Sergio Enrique Moya, Lulu Han, Changyou Gao
Selective enhancement of directional migration of endotheliocytes (ECs) over vascular smooth muscle cells (SMCs) plays a significant role for the fast endothelialization of blood-contacting implants, in particular for the antirestenosis of vascular stents. Herein, a complementary density gradient of poly­(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) (PHEMA) brushes and YIGSR peptide, a sequence specifically improving the mobility of ECs, was fabricated using a dynamically controlled reaction process. The gradients were visualized by fluorescent labeling and further quantified by X-ray photoelectron spectrometry (XPS) and quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCM-d). The ECs exhibited preferential orientation and enhanced directional migration behavior on the gradient surface toward the region of lower PHEMA density and higher YIGSR density. The migration rate of the ECs was significantly enhanced to 5-fold, whereas the mobility of SMCs was not significantly influenced, leading to faster migration of ECs than SMCs. Therefore, the success of the complementary gradient relies on the appropriate interplay between the PHEMA brushes and the cell-specific ligands, enabling the selective guidance of EC migration.