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Guo Yu, Peixi Liu, Yuan Shi, Sichen Li, Yingjun Liu, Zhiyuan Fan and Wei Zhu

OBJECTIVE

Emerging evidence shows that frequent recurrence of intracranial aneurysms (IAs) after endovascular coiling is attributable to the lack of endothelialization across the aneurysm neck. Recently, much attention has been given to the role of microRNAs (miRs) in vascular disease, although their contributory role to IA is poorly understood.

METHODS

Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to microsurgery to create a coiled embolization aneurysm model, and were injected with miR-31a-5p agomir or a negative control agomir via the tail vein at a dose of 10 mg/kg per week for 4 weeks after IA induction. H & E staining, scanning electron microscopy, and flow cytometry were performed to evaluate the effects of miR-31a-5p agomir on endothelialization and the number of circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs). The effects of miR-31a-5p on the viability and functioning of EPCs were also determined using Cell Counting Kit–8, wound-healing assay, and tube formation assays.

RESULTS

The authors tested the ability of miR-31a-5p to promote EPC-induced endothelialization in a model of coiled embolization aneurysm. miR-31a-5p agomir improved endothelialization and elevated the number of circulating EPCs in the peripheral blood compared to a negative control agomir–treated group. In addition, the number of vWF- and KDR-positive cells in the aneurysm neck was increased in the miR-31a-5p agomir–treated group. Furthermore, upregulation of miR-31a-5p promoted EPC proliferation, migration, and tube formation and enhanced the expression of the proangiogenic factor vascular endothelial growth factor in vitro. Mechanistically, miR-31a-5p directly targeted the 3′ untranslated region (3′UTR) of Axin1 messenger RNA and repressed its expression. Besides, miR-31a-5p exerted its effect on EPCs by regulating the Axin1-mediated Wnt/β-catenin pathway.

CONCLUSIONS

Collectively, these results indicate that miR-31a-5p is an important regulator of EPC mobilization and endothelialization and may have a positive effect on aneurysm repair.

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Peixi Liu, Qingzhu An, Xi Chen, Jun Huang, Guo-Yuan Yang and Wei Zhu

OBJECT

Coil embolization is a safe, efficient, and minimally invasive technique for the treatment of intracranial aneurysms. However, coil embolization is associated with a higher risk of recurrence than clip ligation. In this study, the authors explore a new approach through the promotion of endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) to optimize endothelialization of the aneurysm neck and reduce the risk of recurrence.

METHODS

A coiled aneurysm model was created in 48 adult male Sprague-Dawley rats via microsurgery. Half of these animals were treated with rosuvastatin (20 mg/kg) in saline via gavage for 10, 20, or 30 days. The other half were administered saline without rosuvastatin. An additional 15 rats underwent “mock surgery” (identical anesthesia and saline gavage but no surgery). The endothelial repair process in the coiled aneurysms was evaluated via flow cytometry, im-munostaining, and electronic microscopy. The mock surgery group was used for comparison in flow cytometry studies. The effects of rosuvastatin on viability and functioning of Sprague-Dawley rat bone marrow-derived EPCs were also explored via MTT, migration, and tube formation assays.

RESULTS

The aneurysm neck repair score was significantly higher in the rosuvastatin-treated rats than in the untreated rats (p < 0.05). The circulating EPC count was increased and maintained at a higher level in rosuvastatin-treated rats compared with the aneurysm rats that did not receive rosuvastatin (p < 0.05). Immunostaining showed that the aneurysm neck endothelium was more integrated and the number of kinase insert domain receptor-positive cells was increased in the rosuvastatin-treated rats. Further study demonstrated that rosuvastatin promoted EPC proliferation, migration, and tube formation.

CONCLUSIONS

Rosuvastatin promoted endothelialization of the coiled aneurysm neck via induction of EPCs, suggesting that promoting endothelialization provides an additional therapeutic opportunity during vascular endothelium repair.

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Feng Zhou, Zixiao Yang, Wei Zhu, Liang Chen, Jianping Song, Kai Quan, Sichen Li, Peiliang Li, Zhiguang Pan, Peixi Liu and Ying Mao

OBJECTIVE

Epidermoid cysts of the cavernous sinus (CS) are rare, and no large case series of these lesions has been reported. In this study, the authors retrospectively reviewed the outcomes of the surgical management of CS epidermoid cysts undertaken at their center and performed a review of any such cysts reported in the literature over the past 40 years.

METHODS

Clinical data were obtained on 31 patients with CS epidermoid cysts that had been surgically treated at the authors’ hospital between 2001 and 2016. The patients’ medical records, imaging data, and follow-up outcomes were retrospectively analyzed. The related literature from the past 40 years (18 articles, 20 patients) was also evaluated.

RESULTS

The most common chief complaints were facial numbness or hypesthesia (64.5%), absent corneal reflex (45.2%), and abducens or oculomotor nerve deficit (35.5%). On MRI, 51.6% of the epidermoid cysts showed low T1 signals and equal or high T2 signals. In the other lesions, the radiological findings varied considerably given differences in the composition of the cysts. Surgery was performed via the extradural approach (58.1%), intradural approach (32.3%), or a combined approach (9.7%). After the operation, symptoms remained similar or improved in 90.3% of patients and new oculomotor paralysis developed after the operation in 9.7% of patients. Seven patients (22.6%) developed meningitis postoperatively (5 aseptic and 2 septic), and all of them recovered. All patients achieved good recovery before discharge (Karnofsky Performance Status score ≥ 70). Over an average follow-up of 4.6 ± 3.0 years in 25 patients (80.6%), no recurrence or reoperation occurred, regardless of whether total or subtotal resection of the capsule had been achieved.

CONCLUSIONS

Both the extradural and intradural approaches can enable satisfactory lesion resection. A favorable prognosis and symptomatic improvement can be expected after both total and subtotal capsule resections. Total capsule resection is encouraged to minimize the possibility of recurrence provided that the resection can be safely performed.