Microcirculation-derived factors in airway epithelial repair in vivo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Airway epithelial repair, by cell migration over a denuded, intact basement membrane, occurs rapidly in vivo. The present study examines microcirculation-derived factors in the reepithelialization process in the guinea pig. A well-defined tracheal zone was gently deepithelialized; no bleeding occurred and the basement membrane was left intact. Plasma exudation was visualized by use of iv colloidal gold (diameter: 5 nm) or fluoresceinisothiocyanate-labeled dextran. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy confirmed the migration of epithelial cells and, additionally, allowed us to examine the presence of an extracellular matrix gel and leukocytes on the denuded basement membrane. Fibronectin was analyzed by immunocytochemistry. Following epithelial removal plasma promptly extravasates and produces a fibrin-fibronectin gel to cover the denuded basement membrane. Epithelial cells dedifferentiate, flatten, and migrate rapidly (several micron/min) beneath the plasma-derived gel. Within 30 min the gel contains numerous leukocytes, some of which are eosinophils. Plasma exudes into the gel until about 8 hr by which time the entire denuded zone (800 microns) is covered by squamous epithelium. The fibrin-fibronectin gel is suggested to be exclusively plasma-derived. In conclusion, reepithelialization in vivo occurs beneath a gel containing adhesive plasma proteins and leukocytes. We suggest that a plasma exudate provides immediate cover of denuded airway basement membrane and that plasma- and leukocyte-derived factors contribute essentially to reepithelialization in vivo.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Immunology in the medical area
  • Cell and Molecular Biology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161-178
JournalMicrovascular Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1994
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Airway Inflammation and Immunology (013212038), Neuroendocrine Cell Biology (013212008)