Angiogenic potential of the avian somite



We have studied the angiogenic potential of the unsegmented paraxial mesoderm and epithelial somites of the trunk with homotopical grafts between quail and chick embryos. Quail endothelial cells of the grafts were stained with the QH-1 antibody after 1–6 days of reincubation. The unsegmented paraxial mesoderm and all parts of the epithelial somite were found to contain angioblasts which develop into QH-1 positive endothelial cells. These cells are incorporated into the lining of the host's blood vessels such as the perineural vascular plexus and the dorsal branches of the aorta. There is a certain preference as concerns the location of endothelial cells derived from different parts of the somites. Angioblasts from ventral somite halves are mainly found in ventrolateral blood vessels. Those from dorsomedial quadrants form vessels in the dermis of the back, and those from dorsolateral quadrants can be found in the ventrolateral body wall and the wing. With the exception of the dorsal perineural vascular plexus, angioblasts do not cross the median plane of the body. This shows that, although angioblasts migrate extensively, there is bilaterality of the vascular system in the trunk. It remains to be studied whether the notochord plays a role in the establishment of this bilaterality. © 1995 Wiley-Liss, Inc.