Endothelial precursors and mature endothelial cells are increased in the peripheral blood of myelodysplastic syndromes

Agostino Cortelezzi, N. S. Fracchiolla, L. Moronetti Mazzeo, I. Silvestris, M. Pomati, F. Somalvico, F. Bertolini, P. Mancuso, G. C. Pruneri, U. Gianelli, M. C. Pasquini, M. Cortiana, G. Lambertenghi Deliliers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Increased angiogenesis has been demonstrated to be a significant prognostic factor in many solid tumors. In the oncohematological setting, it has been associated with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), chronic myeloid leukemia, acute lymphoid, and myeloid leukemias. Recently, increased circulating endothelial cells (CECs) have been associated with breast cancer and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). Based on these premises we analysed total and activated CECs. and endothelial precursors (CEPs) in 50 MDS patients and 20 healthy donors. CECs and CEPs were quantified by flow cytometry. CEC levels were compared with bone marrow (BM) microvessel density (MVD). In addition, some angiogenic factors, namely vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) and soluble VEGF-Receptor2 (VEGFR2), were tested in the sera from 25 MDS patients. Total, activated CECs and CEPs were significantly increased in MDS when compared to control group (p <0.0001); whereas in the MDS cases no association was found with French-American-British (FAB), International Prognostic Scoring System (IPSS) subtypes or survival. Patients with higher CECs also showed higher MVD. Among the cytokines analysed, sVEGFR2 was significantly higher in the lower IPSS risk classes, while the levels of bFGF directly correlated with total and activated CECs. Taken together these data strengthen the hypothesis of a possible role of angiogenesis in MDS pathogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1345-1351
Number of pages7
JournalLeukemia and Lymphoma
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2005


  • Circulating endothelial cells
  • Circulating endothelial precursors
  • Microvessel density
  • Myelodysplastic syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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