1994 Volume 1 Issue 1 Pages 60-70
During re-endothelialization after intimal denudation induced by balloon catheter in the rat aorta, re-formation of the basement membrane (BM) was examined in samples taken 15 min, 3, 7, 14, 21 and 28 days after the balloon-induced injury. Although the luminal surface of the aortic wall was covered by round-shaped regenerating endothelial cells (ECs) by 7 days after intimal denudation, no continuous BM structure was detectable until 21 days. Periodic acid- thiosemicarbazide gelatin-methenamine silver (PATSC-GMS) staining for electron microscopy and immunostaining of type IV collagen and laminin demonstrated the accumulation of BM components underneath the regenerating ECs after 14 days. The expression of type IV collagen mRNA was revealed in regenerating ECs by in situ hybridization. A continuous BM structure first appeared 21 days after intimal denudation and was almost complete by 28 days. Simultaneously, the regenerating ECs flattened and attached more closely to the BM than in earlier phases. In conclusion, we consider that the regenerating ECs produce the BM components and suggest that reorganization of the newly formed BM is important in the process of differentiation of regenerating ECs.