Publication Date


First Advisor

David Geenen


Rationale: Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSC) induce beneficial effects in the heart following hypoxia but loss of these cells would diminish their effect. We hypothesized that coupling between BM-MSC and cardiomyocytes (CM) through gap junctions (GJ) during hypoxia may play an important role in stem cell retention. Methods and Results: Both human and murine BM-MSC express connexin43 (Cx43), a critical protein in the formation of GJ. FACS analysis revealed that BM-MSC exhibited a significant reduction in apoptosis (3-5 fold; p

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