Turning blood vessels into bone: Endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition in human disease

El día 29 de septiembre el ISPA acogerá la conferencia Turning blood vessels into bone: Endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition in human disease, del investigador del Centro Médico Universitario de Leiden Gonzalo Sanchez-Duffhues. La charla forma parte del ciclo de Conferencias sobre cáncer patrocinado por Janssen y tendrá lugar a las 13:30 h en la sala N-1 S2 006 del HUCA.

Presentación Gonzalo Sanchez-Duffhues

Following his education in Biochemistry in the University of Cordoba (ESP), he enrolled in his PhD studies at the Department of Cell Biology, Physiology and Immunology under the supervision of Prof. Eduardo Muñoz Blanco. During this period, he investigated the signal transduction pathways activated by pro-inflammatory cytokines, and identified novel (semi)synthetic compounds and cellular factors modulating inflammatory signalling, using HIV and rheumatoid arthritis as model systems. After defending his PhD, in 2011 he moved to the group of Prof. Peter ten Dijke, at the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC, Leiden, NL), where he investigated the crosstalk between classical inflammatory pathways and transforming growth factor (TGF)-b signal transduction as key modulators of Endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndMT). Within the group headed by Prof. Marie-José Goumans (LUMC), since 2017 he leads a research team using rare TGF-b monogenic human diseases in combination with novel drug screening methods and patient-derived 3D cell culture platforms (organ-on-chip) with the ultimate goal of identifying novel biomarkers, small molecules and druggable targets to modulate cell plasticity in cardiovascular, musculoskeletal and fibrotic disorders, and cancer. In his career, he has published over 50 manuscripts and obtained diverse awards in competitive grant programs, contracted service fees with biotech companies, and personal awards (e.g., 1st Marshall Urist BMP Young Investigator). He is an elected member of the European Calcified Tissue Society (ECTS) Young Academy and recent Ramon y Cajal laureate.

Temática de la charla

Endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndMT) refers to an extreme form of endothelial cell (EC) plasticity, by which ECs lose their morphological and functional characteristics and progressively become stem-like cells with the ability to differentiate into mesoderm lineages, such as osteoblasts, chondrocytes or myofibroblasts. During embryonic development, EndMT is necessary for the development of essential tissues and organs. Postnatally, EndMT compromises EC function and blood vessel stability, but it also contributes to the spread of fibrotic and calcified tissues, for example, in cardiovascular disease and cancer. Classical inflammatory cytokines and members of the transforming growth factor (TGF)-b superfamily are well-recognized extracellular modulators of EndMT. During his talk, Dr. Sanchez-Duffhues will introduce EndMT and its major regulation by TGF-b signalling. Furthermore, he will focus on a recent publication highlighting the identification of a novel multi potent endothelial cell population in the murine and human bone marrow, in patients undergoing chemotherapy. These previously unreported cells exhibit the ability to undergo EndMT and replenish the bone marrow niche, mainly in response to endogenous interleukin-33. These data may be instructive to develop novel approaches to human tissue regeneration.