Dendritic cells support angiogenesis and promote lesion growth in a murine model of endometriosis

Ofer Fainaru*, Avner Adini, Ofra Benny, Irit Adini, Sarah Short, Lauren Bazinet, Kei Nakai, Elke Pravda, Mark D. Hornstein, Robert J. D'Amato, Judah Folkman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

103 Scopus citations


Endometriosis affects 10-15% of women and is associated with pelvic pain and infertility. Angiogenesis plays an essential role in its pathogenesis. Dendritic cells (DCs) were recently implicated in supporting tumor angiogenesis. As both tumors and endometriosis lesions depend on angiogenesis, we investigated the possibility that DCs may also play a role in endometriosis. We induced endometriosis in 8-wk-old female C57BL/6 mice by implantation of autologous endometrium into the peritoneal cavity. We observed an abundance of CD11c+ DCs infiltrating sites of angiogenesis in endometriosis lesions. We noticed a similar pattern of infiltrating DCs at sites of angiogenesis in the peritoneal Lewis lung carcinoma tumor model. These DCs were immature (major histocompatability complex class IIlow) and expressed vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2. Peritoneal implanted bone marrow-derived DCs (BMDCs) incorporated into both endometriosis lesions and into B16 melanoma tumors and enhanced their growth at 8 days compared with controls (5.1±2.5 vs. 1.5±0.5mm2, n=4 and 4, P<0.0001 for endometriosis; 67.6±15.1 vs. 22.7±14.6 mm2, n=5 and 7, P=0.0004 for mouse melanoma). Finally, immature BMDCs but not mature BMDCs enhanced microvascular endothelial cell migration in vitro (219±51 vs. 93±32 cells, P=0.02). Based on these findings, we suggest a novel role for DCs in supporting angiogenesis and promoting lesion growth both in endometriosis and in tumors.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)522-529
Number of pages8
JournalFASEB Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Lewis lung carcinoma
  • Melanoma


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