Helena Vazão

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This study aims at investigating the behavior in terms of the proliferation and skeletal muscle differentiation capability of two myoblastic cell lines, C2C12 and H9c2, on both isotropic and anisotropic electrospun nanofibrous poly(hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) scaffolds, as well as on PHB films and polystyrene controls. After a careful characterization of the(More)
In this study we demonstrate that CD34(+) cells derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) have higher smooth muscle cell (SMC) potential than CD34(-) cells. We report that from all inductive signals tested, retinoic acid (RA) and platelet derived growth factor (PDGF(BB)) are the most effective agents in guiding the differentiation of CD34(+) cells(More)
Several clinical trials are exploring therapeutic effect of human CD34(+) cells in ischemic diseases, including myocardial infarction. Unfortunately, most of the cells die few days after delivery. Herein we show that lysophosphatidic acid (LPA)-treated human umbilical cord blood-derived CD34(+) cells cultured under hypoxic and serum-deprived conditions(More)
Hemoglobinopathies are priority genetic diseases for prevention programs in at-risk populations. We implemented an accurate and simple methodology to identify hemoglobin (Hb) variants and to quantify HbA2 and HbF in capillary blood samples stored at room temperature for up to 7 days after collection. This methodology is particularly indicated for screening(More)
In this paper, we describe the effects of the combination of topographical, mechanical, chemical and intracellular electrical stimuli on a co-culture of fibroblasts and skeletal muscle cells. The co-culture was anisotropically grown onto an engineered micro-grooved (10 µm-wide grooves) polyacrylamide substrate, showing a precisely tuned Young's modulus (∼(More)
Stem cell-based therapies represent a promising therapy for myocardial infarction. Pre-clinical and clinical tests performed in the last 10 years indicate that several types of stem cells and their progenies reduce infarct size and improve cardiac contractile function. The mechanism is dependent on the type of cell and involves a combination of several(More)
Herein, we report that VEGF-functionalized dextran (dexOx-VEGF) is comparatively superior to free VEGF in prolonging the phosphorylation of VEGF receptor 2 (VEGFR-2). Both dexOx-VEGF and free VEGF activate VEGFR-2, and the complexes are internalized into early endosomes (EEA1(+) vesicles) and then transported to lysosomes (Rab7(+) vesicles). However, after(More)
Birth defects, which are in part caused by exposure to environmental chemicals and pharmaceutical drugs, affect 1 in every 33 babies born in the United States each year. The current standard to screen drugs that affect embryonic development is based on prenatal animal testing; however, this approach yields low-throughput and limited mechanistic information(More)
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