Differences in local environment determine the site of physiological angiogenesis in rat skeletal muscle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • Iman Badr
  • Olga Hudlicka
  • Malgorzata Milkiewicz
  • Julie Verhaeg


The specificity in location of angiogenesis to either glycolytic or oxidative fibre types, or muscle regions, was examined in the tibialis anterior (TA) and extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscles of rat. Angiogenesis was induced by mechanical means either with (chronic muscle stimulation) or without (muscle stretch by overload) changes in blood flow, treatments which invoked only minor changes in fibre type and fibre size. Proliferation estimated by PCNA labelling of cells co-localised with capillaries was very rare in control muscles, where it occurred mainly in the glycolytic regions, but was increased in both models of angiogenesis. However, when labelled capillaries were scored according to the type of surrounding fibres, only muscle stimulation significantly accentuated proliferation of capillaries surrounded by glycolytic fibres. We conclude that while mechanical stimuli are important for proliferation in glycolytic regions in both models, capillary growth occurs specifically around glycolytic fibres in that region when the angiogenic stimulus includes increased blood flow and/or increased metabolic demand.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-568
Number of pages4
JournalExperimental Physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2003