Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Pathol. 2008 Oct;173(4):1220-8. doi: 10.2353/ajpath.2008.071194. Epub 2008 Sep 4.

Capillary sprout endothelial cells exhibit a CD36 low phenotype: regulation by shear stress and vascular endothelial growth factor-induced mechanism for attenuating anti-proliferative thrombospondin-1 signaling.

Author information

Department of Biomedical Engineering and the Robert M. Berne Cardiovascular Research Center, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22908, USA.


Endothelial cells acquire distinctive molecular signatures in their transformation to an angiogenic phenotype that are indicative of changes in cell behavior and function. Using a rat mesentery model of inflammation-induced angiogenesis and a panel of known endothelial markers (CD31, VE-cadherin, BS-I lectin), we identified a capillary sprout-specific endothelial phenotype that is characterized by the marked down-regulation of CD36, a receptor for the anti-angiogenic molecule thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1). TSP-1/CD36 interactions were shown to regulate angiogenesis in this model as application of TSP-1 inhibited angiogenesis and blockade of both TSP-1 and CD36 accelerated angiogenesis. Vascular endothelial growth factor, which was up-regulated in the in vivo model, elicited a dose- and time-dependent down-regulation of CD36 (ie, to a CD36 low phenotype) in cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells. Human umbilical vein endothelial cells that had been conditioned to a CD36 low phenotype with VEGF were found to be refractory to anti-proliferative TSP-1 signaling via a CD36-dependent mechanism. The loss of exposure to wall shear stress, which occurs in vivo when previously quiescent cells begin to sprout, also generated a CD36 low phenotype. Ultimately, our results identified the regulation of endothelial cell CD36 expression as a novel mechanism through which VEGF stimulates and sustains capillary sprouting in the presence of TSP-1. Additionally, CD36 was shown to function as a potential molecular linkage through which wall shear stress may regulate both microvessel sprouting and quiescence.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center