Angiocrine control of heart regeneration
Heart failure following myocardial infarction is a leading cause of death worldwide, and there remains a great interest in identifying regenerative approaches to strengthen failing hearts. Recent studies have shown that stimulation of adult cardiomyocyte dedifferentiation and proliferation is able to significantly promote cardiac repair in mice and pigs. Hence, understanding how these processes are regulated will help identify new therapeutic approaches for heart failure. Using zebrafish as a model, data from our group and others indicate that the cardiac endothelium and revascularization are critical for heart regeneration, potentially via secreting factors that modulate cardiomyocyte behavior. This project aims at understanding the role of cardiac endothelial cells during cardiac regeneration and identifying secreted and membrane-boundfactors that can promote key processes of myocardial regeneration, namely dedifferentiation, cell cycle entry, and cytokinesis.