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Regul Pept. 2013 Mar 10;182:53-8. doi: 10.1016/j.regpep.2012.12.006. Epub 2013 Feb 9.

Urotensin II-induced collagen synthesis in cultured smooth muscle cells from rat aortic media and a possible involvement of transforming growth factor-β1/Smad2/3 signaling pathway.

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1
Department of Cardiology, Peking University First Hospital, PR China.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Recent studies suggest that urotensin II (UII) and transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) both have critical roles in vascular remodeling. UII is a recently discovered vasoconstrictive peptide that is involved in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis, restenosis and hypertension. TGF-β1 is an important factor that has a pivotal role in vascular fibrosis. This study aimed to explore whether TGF-β1 is involved in UII-induced collagen synthesis in rat aortic vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) and examined the effects and mechanisms of UII on collagen synthesis and secretion in VSMCs.

METHODS:

VSMCs were prepared by the explant culture method. TGF-β1 and collagen I secretions from the cells were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The mRNA and protein expressions of TGF-β1, collagen I, Smad2 and Smad3 were determined using Real-time RT-PCR and Western blotting.

RESULTS:

UII dose-dependently promoted TGF-β1 protein expression and secretion from VSMCs, with maximal effect at 10(-8) mol/l at 24 h for protein expression and 10(-7) mol/l at 24 h for protein secretion (both P<0.01). Moreover, UII dose-dependently promoted Smad2 and Smad3 mRNA expression in VSMCs, with maximal effect at 10(-8) mol/l for 12 h (both P<0.01). The effects of UII were significantly inhibited by its receptor antagonists urantide (10(-6) mol/l) or SB-710411 (10(-6) mol/l), and by the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK/ERK) inhibitor PD98059 (10(-6) mol/l). UII dose-dependently promoted collagen I mRNA expression and protein secretion in VSMCs, with maximal effect at 10(-8) mol/l at 12h for mRNA expression and 10(-6) mol/l at 24 h for protein secretion (both P<0.01). Collagen synthesis and secretion from VSMCs induced by UII were inhibited significantly by a TGF-β1-specific neutralizing antibody, SB-431542 (an antagonist of the TGF-β1 type II receptor) and PD98059 (all P<0.01).

CONCLUSIONS:

This study suggests that UII could induce collagen synthesis and secretion through upregulation of TGF-β1 expression and secretion in VSMCs, and that TGF-β1/Smad2/3 signaling might be one of the important pathways by which UII is involved in vascular fibrosis.

PMID:
23403244
DOI:
10.1016/j.regpep.2012.12.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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