• stromal cells;
  • human adipose stem cells;
  • endothelial differentiation;
  • vascular grafts;
  • stem cells


Adipose tissue is a readily available source of multipotent adult stem cells for use in tissue engineering/regenerative medicine. Various growth factors have been used to stimulate acquisition of endothelial characteristics by adipose-derived stem cells (ADSC). Herein, we study the growth and endothelial differentiation potential of ADSC seeded onto a porous polycaprolactone (PCL) scaffold. The objective of this study is to demonstrate that PCL is a good material to be used as a scaffold to support reconstruction of new endothelial tissue using adipose stem cells. We found that undifferentiated ADSC adhere and grow on PCL. We show that, after culture in endothelial differentiation medium, ADSC were positive to LDL uptake and expressed molecular markers characteristic of endothelial cells (CD31; eNOS and vWF). In addition, our study defines the time required for the differentiation of ADSC directly onto PCL. This study suggests that PCL can be used as a scaffold to generate endothelial tissue in vitro. PLC has excellent mechanical properties and a slow degradation rate. Moreover, based on our results, we propose that PCL could be used to graft scaffolds coated with endothelial cells derived from ADSC stem cells. Endothelial cells-coated PCL could find several applications to replace damaged area of the body; for example, a possible use could be the generation of vascular grafts. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A, 2012.