Primary endothelial cells are needed for angiogenesis studies, and more particularly in the field of tissue engineering, to engineer pre-vascularized tissues. Investigations often use human umbilical vein endothelial cells due to their extensive characterization, but also because they are easy to obtain and isolate. An alternative is the use of human dermal microvascular endothelial cells, more representative of adult skin angiogenesis and vascularization processes. This chapter presents a detailed methodology to isolate and culture microvascular endothelial cells from skin biopsies based on enzymatic digestion and mechanical extraction.
Keywords: Angiogenesis; Capillary; Cell isolation; Endothelial cells; Immunoselection; Microvascularization; Skin engineering.