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Toxicol Lett. 2010 Nov 30;199(2):115-22. doi: 10.1016/j.toxlet.2010.08.010. Epub 2010 Aug 24.

Resveratrol induces p53 and suppresses myocardin-mediated vascular smooth muscle cell differentiation.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI 48201, USA.


Resveratrol (RSVL), a polyphenolic antioxidant present in red wine, has been shown to provide cardiovascular protection by improving endothelial function and reducing myocardial ischemia. However, little is known about how RSVL affects vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) differentiation. RSVL blocks VSMC proliferation in vitro and neointimal formation following artery injury in vivo. Thus, one might expect that RSVL will promote VSMC differentiation. Unexpectedly, our results in this study show that RSVL induces VSMCs phenotypic modulation; this is characterized by suppressed transcription of SMC-specific marker genes Tagln, Acta2, Myh11, and Smtn in a dose-dependent and time-dependent manner in cultured VSMCs. Consistent with previous studies, RSVL induces the nuclear translocation of p53 and the expression of p53-responsive genes such as Cdkn1a, Gadd45a, Gadd45, and Fas. In an effort to identify the molecular mechanisms whereby RSVL represses VSMC differentiation, we found that RSVL inhibits the transcription of Myocardin (myocd) and Srf, the key VSMC transcriptional regulators. However, knockingdown and overexpressing p53 did not affect RSVL-induced VSMCs phenotypic modulation: this suggests that RSVL may induce VSMC dedifferentiation via p53-independent mechanisms. This study provides the first evidence showing that RSVL induces VSMC dedifferentiation by regulating Myocardin and SRF-mediated VSMC gene transcription.

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