Human astrocytes/astrocyte-conditioned medium and shear stress enhance the barrier properties of human brain microvascular endothelial cells

Venkatraman Siddharthan, Yuri V. Kim, Suyi Liu, Kwang Sik Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a structural and functional barrier that regulates the passage of molecules into and out of the brain to maintain the neural microenvironment. We have previously developed the in vitro BBB model with human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMEC). However, in vivo HBMEC are shown to interact with astrocytes and also exposed to shear stress through blood flow. In an attempt to develop the BBB model to mimic the in vivo condition we constructed the flow-based in vitro BBB model using HBMEC and human fetal astrocytes (HFA). We also examined the effect of astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM) in lieu of HFA to study the role of secreted factor(s) on the BBB properties. The tightness of HBMEC monolayer was assessed by the permeability of dextran and propidium iodide as well as by measuring the transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER). We showed that the HBMEC permeability was reduced and TEER was increased by non-contact, co-cultivation with HFA and ACM. The exposure of HBMEC to shear stress also exhibited decreased permeability. Moreover, HFA/ACM and shear flow exhibited additive effect of decreasing the permeability of HBMEC monolayer. In addition, we showed that the HBMEC expression of ZO-1 (tight junction protein) was increased by co-cultivation with ACM and in response to shear stress. These findings suggest that the non-contact co-cultivation with HFA helps maintain the barrier properties of HBMEC by secreting factor(s) into the medium. Our in vitro flow model system with the cells of human origin should be useful for studying the interactions between endothelial cells, glial cells, and secreted factor(s) as well as the role of shear stress in the barrier property of HBMEC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-50
Number of pages12
JournalBrain research
Volume1147
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 25 2007

Keywords

  • Astrocyte
  • Astrocyte-conditioned medium
  • Brain endothelial cell
  • In vitro BBB model
  • Permeability
  • Tight junction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology

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