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Blood. 2008 Apr 15;111(8):4145-54. doi: 10.1182/blood-2007-08-110338. Epub 2008 Feb 5.

Angiopoietin-1 promotes endothelial cell proliferation and migration through AP-1-dependent autocrine production of interleukin-8.

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  • 1Critical Care and Respiratory Divisions and Meakins-Christie Laboratories, Department of Medicine, McGill University Health Centre, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada.

Erratum in

  • Blood. 2008 Jun 15;111(12):5761.


Angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1), ligand for the endothelial cell-specific Tie-2 receptors, promotes migration and proliferation of endothelial cells, however, whether these effects are promoted through the release of a secondary mediator remains unclear. In this study, we assessed whether Ang-1 promotes endothelial cell migration and proliferation through the release of interleukin-8 (IL-8). Ang-1 elicited in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) a dose- and time-dependent increase in IL-8 production as a result of induction of mRNA and enhanced mRNA stability of IL-8 transcripts. IL-8 production is also elevated in HUVECs transduced with retroviruses expressing Ang-1. Neutralization of IL-8 in these cells with a specific antibody significantly attenuated proliferation and migration and induced caspase-3 activation. Exposure to Ang-1 triggered a significant increase in DNA binding of activator protein-1 (AP-1) to a relatively short fragment of IL-8 promoter. Upstream from the AP-1 complex, up-regulation of IL-8 transcription by Ang-1 was mediated through the Erk1/2, SAPK/JNK, and PI-3 kinase pathways, which triggered c-Jun phosphorylation on Ser63 and Ser73. These results suggest that promotion of endothelial migration and proliferation by Ang-1 is mediated, in part, through the production of IL-8, which acts in an autocrine fashion to suppress apoptosis and facilitate cell proliferation and migration.

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