Low-energy shock wave for enhancing recruitment of endothelial progenitor cells: a new modality to increase efficacy of cell therapy in chronic hind limb ischemia

Stem and progenitor cell therapy is a novel approach to improve neovascularization and function of ischemic tissue. Enhanced tissue expression of chemoattractant factors such as stromal cell–derived factor 1 and vascular endothelial growth factor is crucial for the recruitment of circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) during acute ischemia. In chronic ischemia, however, expression of these chemoattractants is less pronounced, which results in insufficient EPC recruitment into the target tissue. Therefore, we investigated the effect of targeted extracorporeal shock wave (SW) application in order to facilitate EPC recruitment into nonischemic and chronic ischemic tissue.

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