In vivo studies of the vascular system in ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL) model mice.
The aim of this study was to investigate blood coagulability, vascular morphology, and vasculogenesis capability, known as venous thromboembolism (VTE) risk factors in the ossification model, tiptoe walking (ttw) mice.
Summary of Background Data.
Patients with OPLL are more likely to develop VTE after spinal cord injury. Capillary mesh invasion of spinal ligaments precedes spinal ligament ossification in ttw mice. Investigation on vascular systems of ttw mice may contribute to clarifying its pathology.
Coagulability of blood samples from ttw and C57BL/6 (WT) mice were evaluated at 8, 16, and 24 weeks of age. Vascular morphology was assessed from a Hematoxylin-Eosin stained section by measuring vessel area. A tube formation assay was performed with endothelial cells isolated from the aorta to assess vasculogenesis.
Prothrombin time was significantly shorter in ttw mice than in WT at 8 and 16 weeks. Fibrinogen had a greater increase in ttw mice than in WT at 16 weeks. The vascular area and vascular wall area were significantly smaller in ttw mice than in WT at all timepoints. The ratio of vascular wall area to vascular area was significantly smaller in ttw mice than in WT at 24 weeks. The endothelial cells from ttw mice formed significantly higher numbers of total branching points than WT cells.
Ossification model mice had impaired blood coagulation and vascular morphology and high capacity for vasculogenesis. With regard to the pathogenesis of VTE, ttw mice harbor an environment that promotes the development of VTE.
Level of Evidence: N/A