Role of Endothelial Progenitor Cells in the Metabolic Syndrome

  • Carla Costa


The discovery of postnatal vasculogenesis and of the important roles played by Endothelial Progenitor Cells (EPCs) was a landmark in vascular biology that forever has changed the concept of neovascularization. In Metabolic Syndrome (MS) most of EPCs biological functions seem to be impaired and associated with deficient vascular repair, with the maintenance of endothelial dysfunction conditions and the progression of atherosclerosis. The therapeutic control of MS-associated cardiovascular risk factors may restore some of EPCs abrogated functional activities preventing cardiovascular disease development.

This review summarizes current data concerning EPCs biological features in MS and provides a therapeutic outline on the beneficial effects of restoring endogenous vasculogenesis mechanisms in the MS clinical setting.


Cardiovascular risk factors Endothelial dysfunction Endothelial progenitor cells Metabolic syndrome Vasculogenesis 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carla Costa
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry (U38/FCT) and Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology, Faculty of MedicineUniversity of Porto, Al. Prof. Hernâni MonteiroPortoPortugal

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