Differential localization of von Willebrand factor, fibronectin and 13-HODE in human endothelial cell cultures
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Von Willebrand factor (vWF), fibronectin (FN) and 13-hydroxy-octadecadienoic acid (13-HODE) are known to influence the regulation of the adhesive properties of vascular surfaces. In the present study vWF, FN and 13-HODE were comparatively localized in endothelial cells (EC) and in the extracellular matrix (ECM) produced by EC. An indirect immunofluorescent technique was applied to coverslips containing human EC cultures previously fixed and permeabilized following different procedures: A. Alcohol/acetone; B. Paraformaldehyde alone and C. Paraformaldehyde followed by Triton X-100. vWF was observed inside EC (A), on the ECM produced by EC (B) or in EC and ECM (C) depending on the fixation procedures used. FN was mainly localized in the ECM despite the fixation procedures employed. FN was only seen in relation to cell bodies after strong permeabilization (A). Under our experimental conditions 13-HODE was never found in ECM. This latter antigen was observed randomly dispersed in those preparations fixed with alcohol/acetone, indicating that it is probably extracted by this fixative. 13-HODE was detected in granular shaped structures in EC after permeabilization with detergent (C). These results suggest that the cellular localization of vWF and FN is compatible with an adhesive role related to the abluminal side of ECs. 13-HODE was readily observed after mild permeabilization. This finding would be morphologically consistent with its contribution to the regulation of the vessel wall thromboresistance.
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