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Stroke. 2011 Mar;42(3):770-5. doi: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.110.597799. Epub 2011 Jan 21.

Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor enhances arteriogenesis and ameliorates cerebral damage in a mouse model of ischemic stroke.

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  • 1Division of Stroke, Department of Neurology, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, 2-2 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871, Japan.



Enhancing collateral artery growth is a potent therapeutic approach to treat cardiovascular ischemic disease from occlusive artery. Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) has gained attention for its ability to promote arteriogenesis, ameliorating brain damage, by the mechanisms involving monocyte upregulation. However, the recent clinical study testing its efficacy in myocardial ischemia has raised the question about its safety. We tested alternative colony-stimulating factors for their effects on collateral artery growth and brain protection.


Brain hypoperfusion was produced by occluding the left common carotid artery in C57/BL6 mice. After the surgery, granulocyte colony-stimulating factor, macrophage colony-stimulating factor, or GM-CSF (100 μg/kg/day) was administered daily for 5 days. The angioarchitecture for leptomeningeal anastomoses and the circle of Willis were visualized after the colony-stimulating factor treatment. Circulating blood monocytes and Mac-2-positive cells in the dorsal surface of the brain were determined. A set of animals underwent subsequent ipsilateral middle cerebral artery occlusion and infarct volume was assessed.


Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor as well as GM-CSF promoted leptomeningeal collateral growth after common carotid artery occlusion. Both granulocyte colony-stimulating factor and GM-CSF increased circulating blood monocytes and Mac-2-positive cells in the dorsal brain surface, suggesting the mechanisms coupled to monocyte upregulation might be shared. Infarct volume after middle cerebral artery occlusion was reduced by granulocyte colony-stimulating factor, similarly to GM-CSF. Macrophage colony-stimulating factor showed none of theses effects.


Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor enhances collateral artery growth and reduces infarct volume in a mouse model of brain ischemia, similarly to GM-CSF.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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