Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Biol Chem. 2003 Feb 28;278(9):7520-30. Epub 2002 Dec 2.

Cooperative interaction of hypoxia-inducible factor-2alpha (HIF-2alpha ) and Ets-1 in the transcriptional activation of vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2 (Flk-1).

Author information

  • 1Zentrum für Molekulare Medizin der Universität zu Köln, Joseph-Stelzmann-Strasse 9, 50931 Köln, Germany.


Interactions between Ets family members and a variety of other transcription factors serve important functions during development and differentiation processes, e.g. in the hematopoietic system. Here we show that the endothelial basic helix-loop-helix PAS domain transcription factor, hypoxia-inducible factor-2alpha (HIF-2alpha) (but not its close relative HIF-1alpha), cooperates with Ets-1 in activating transcription of the vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2 (VEGF-2) gene (Flk-1). The receptor tyrosine kinase Flk-1 is indispensable for angiogenesis, and its expression is closely regulated during development. Consistent with the hypothesis that HIF-2alpha controls the expression of Flk-1 in vivo, we show here that HIF-2alpha and Flk-1 are co-regulated in postnatal mouse brain capillaries. A tandem HIF-2alpha/Ets binding site was identified within the Flk-1 promoter that acted as a strong enhancer element. Based on the analysis of transgenic mouse embryos, these motifs are essential for endothelial cell-specific reporter gene expression. A single HIF-2alpha/Ets element conferred strong cooperative induction by HIF-2alpha and Ets-1 when fused to a heterologous promoter and was most active in endothelial cells. The physical interaction of HIF-2alpha with Ets-1 was demonstrated and localized to the HIF-2alpha carboxyl terminus and the autoinhibitory exon VII domain of Ets-1, respectively. The deletion of the DNA binding and carboxyl-terminal transactivation domains of HIF-2alpha, respectively, created dominant negative mutants that suppressed transactivation by the wild type protein and failed to synergize with Ets-1. These results suggest that the interaction between HIF-2alpha and endothelial Ets factors is required for the full transcriptional activation of Flk-1 in endothelial cells and may therefore represent a future target for the manipulation of angiogenesis.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Publication Types, MeSH Terms, Substances

Publication Types

MeSH Terms


PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk