Generation of cardiac progenitor cells through epicardial to mesenchymal transition

Antonia Germani, Eleonora Foglio, Maurizio C. Capogrossi, Matteo Antonio Russo, Federica Limana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a biological process that drives the formation of cells involved both in tissue repair and in pathological conditions, including tissue fibrosis and tumor metastasis by providing cancer cells with stem cell properties. Recent findings suggest that EMT is reactivated in the heart following ischemic injury. Specifically, epicardial EMT might be involved in the formation of cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs) that can differentiate into endothelial cells, smooth muscle cells, and, possibly, cardiomyocytes. The identification of mechanisms and signaling pathways governing EMT-derived CPC generation and differentiation may contribute to the development of a more efficient regenerative approach for adult heart repair. Here, we summarize key literature in the field.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)735-748
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Molecular Medicine
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 22 2015


  • Cardiac repair
  • EMT
  • Epicardial cells
  • Molecular rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Drug Discovery
  • Genetics(clinical)


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