Microvascular assembly and cell invasion in chick mesonephros grafted onto chorioallantoic membrane

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Embryonic tissues, in common with other tissues, including tumours, tend to develop a substantial vasculature when transplanted onto the chorioallantoic membrane (CAM). Studies conducted to date have not examined in any detail the identity of vessels that supply these grafts, although it is known that the survival of transplanted tissues depends on their ability to connect with CAM vessels supplying oxygen and nutrients. We grafted the mesonephros, a challenging model for studies in vascular development, when it was fully developed (HH35). We used reciprocal chick-quail transplantations in order to study the arterial and venous connections and to analyse the cell invasion from the CAM to the organ, whose degeneration in normal conditions is rapid. The revascularization of the grafted mesonephros was produced by the formation of peripheral anastomoses between the graft and previous host vasculatures. The assembly of graft and CAM blood vessels occurred between relatively large arteries or veins, resulting in chimeric vessels of varying morphology depending on their arterial or venous status. Grafts showed an increased angiogenesis from their original vasculature, suggesting that the normal vascular degeneration of the mesonephros was partially inhibited. Three types of isolated host haemangioblast were identified in the mesonephros: migrating angioblast-like cells, indicating vasculogenesis, undifferentiated haematopoietic cells and macrophages, which might have been involved in the angiogenesis. Tomato lectin was found to bind activated macrophages in avian embryos.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-225
JournalJournal of Anatomy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2003


  • Angiogenesis
  • Avian embryo
  • Embryonic grafts
  • Mesonephros
  • Vasculogenesis

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