Single Cell Analysis in Vascular Biology

April 28, 2020 by

Karen Hirschi

Single Cell Analysis in Vascular Biology

Chavkin, N and K.K. Hirschi. (2020) Single cell analysis in vascular biology. Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine doi: 10.3389/fcvm.2020.00042.

PMID: 32296715


The ability to quantify DNA, RNA, and protein variations at the single cell level has revolutionized our understanding of cellular heterogeneity within tissues. Via such analyses, individual cells within populations previously thought to be homogeneous can now be delineated into specific subpopulations expressing unique sets of genes, enabling specialized functions. In vascular biology, studies using single cell RNA sequencing have revealed extensive heterogeneity among endothelial and mural cells even within the same vessel, key intermediate cell types that arise during blood and lymphatic vessel development, and cell-type specific responses to disease. Thus, emerging new single cell analysis techniques are enabling vascular biologists to elucidate mechanisms of vascular development, homeostasis, and disease that were previously not possible. In this review, we will provide an overview of single cell analysis methods and highlight recent advances in vascular biology made possible through single cell RNA sequencing.

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