Different subsets of circulating angiogenic cells do not predict bronchopulmonary dysplasia or other diseases of prematurity in preterm infants

Alessandro Borghesi, M. Massa, R. Campanelli, F. Garofoli, S. Longo, R. Cabano, I. Mazzucchelli, C. Tzialla, A. W D Gavilanes, D. Gazzolo, P. Manzoni, L. Bollani, A. Spinillo, V. Rosti, M. Stronati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) is a chronic lung disease occurring in very and extremely preterm infants undergoing mechanical ventilation. Given the altered lung vascular growth characterizing BPD, circulating angiogenic cells could be useful biomarkers to predict the risk. The objective of the study was to determine whether the percentages of circulating angiogenic cells (CD34+VEGFR-2+, CD34+CD133+VEGFR-2+, and CD45-CD34+CD133+VEGFR-2+ cells), assessed in the peripheral blood at birth by flow cytometry, could be used as markers for the risk of BPD. In one-hundred and forty-two preterm neonates (gestational age <32 weeks and/or birth weight <1500 g) admitted to our tertiary care Neonatal Intensive Care Unit between 2006 and 2009, we evaluated the percentages of circulating angiogenic cells at birth, at 7 days, and, in a subset of infants (n=40), at 28 days of life. The main outcome was the correlation between cell counts at birth and the subsequent risk of developing BPD. In our study, all the three cell populations failed to predict the development of BPD or other diseases of prematurity. We suggest that these cells cannot be used as biomarkers in preterm infants, and that research is needed to find other early predictors of BPD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)809-816
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013



  • Bronchopulmonary dysplasia
  • Chronic lung disease
  • Endothelial
  • Newborn infant
  • Preterm

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy

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