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Neural Plasticity
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 6809745, 8 pages
Research Article

Constitutive Expression of Adiponectin in Endothelial Progenitor Cells Protects a Rat Model of Cerebral Ischemia

1Department of Neurology, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan 430071, China
2Department of Neurology, Xiangyang Central Hospital, Xiangyang 441000, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Yumin Liu

Received 1 May 2017; Accepted 15 August 2017; Published 22 October 2017

Academic Editor: J. Michael Wyss

Copyright © 2017 Renwei Zhang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), as precursors to endothelial cells, play a significant part in the process of endogenous blood vessel repair and maintenance of endothelial integrity. Adiponectin (APN) is an adipocyte-specific adipocytokine. In this study, we aim to test whether we transplant a combined graft of EPCs transfected with the adiponectin gene into a rat model of cerebral ischemia could improve functional recovery after middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were randomly divided into a MCAO control group, a MCAO EPC treatment group, and a MCAO LV-APN-EPC treatment group. A focal cerebral ischemia and reperfusion model was induced by the intraluminal suture method. After 2 h of reperfusion, EPCs were transplanted by injection through the tail vein. A rotarod test was conducted to assess behavioral function before MCAO and on days 1, 7, and 14 after MCAO. After 14 d, TTC staining, CD31 immunofluorescence, and TUNEL staining were used to evaluate infarct volume, microvessel density, and cell apoptosis. Results revealed that behavioral function, infarct area percentage, microvessel density, and cell apoptosis rates were more favorable in the LV-APN-EPC treatment group than in the EPC treatment group. These data suggested that gene-modified cell therapy may be a useful approach for the treatment of ischemic stroke.