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Cell Adh Migr. 2011 Jul-Aug;5(4):332-43. doi: 10.4161/cam.5.4.17287.

Overexpression of VEGF189 in breast cancer cells induces apoptosis via NRP1 under stress conditions.

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1
INSERM U65, Hôpital Lariboisière-Saint Louis, Paris, France.

Abstract

The existence of multiple VEGF-A isoforms raised the possibility that they may have distinct functions in tumor growth. We have previously published that VEGF189 and VEGF165 contribute to breast cancer progression and angiogenesis, but VEGF165 induced the most rapid tumor uptake. Since VEGF165 has been described as a survival factor for breast tumor cells, we questioned here the effects of VEGF189 on the survival/apoptosis of MDA-MB-231 cells. We used clones which overexpress VEGF189 (V189) or VEGF165 (V165) isoforms and compared them to a control one (cV). Overexpression of VEGF189 resulted in increased cell apoptosis, as determined by Annexin-V apoptosis assay, under serum starvation and doxorubicin treatment, while VEGF 165 was confirmed to be a survival factor. Since MDA-MB-231 highly express NRP1 (a co-receptor for VEGF-A), we used short hairpin RNA (shRNA) to knockdown NRP1 expression. V189shNRP1 clones were characterized by reduced apoptosis and higher necrosis, as compared to V189shCtl, under stress conditions. Unexpectedly, NRP1 knock-down had no effect on the survival or apoptosis of V165 cells. VEGF189 showed greater affinity towards NRP1 than VEGF165 using a BIAcore binding assay. Finally, since endogenously produced urokinase-type plasminogen (uPA) has been found to prevent apoptosis in breast cancers, we analyzed the level of uPA activity in our clones. An inhibition of uPA activity was observed in V189shNRP1 clones. Altogether, these results suggest a major role of NRP1 in apoptosis induced by VEGF189 in stress conditions and confirm VEGF165 as a survival factor.

PMID:
21897119
PMCID:
PMC3210301
DOI:
10.4161/cam.5.4.17287
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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