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Dev Biol. 2015 Mar 1;399(1):117-128. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2014.12.021. Epub 2015 Jan 7.

Tie1 is required for lymphatic valve and collecting vessel development.

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Department of Pediatrics (Cardiology), Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN 37232, USA.
Department of Genetics, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, NY 10461, USA.
Department of Pediatrics (Cardiology), Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN 37232, USA; Department of Cell and Development Biology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN 37232, USA. Electronic address:


Tie1 is a receptor tyrosine kinase with broad expression in embryonic endothelium. Reduction of Tie1 levels in mouse embryos with a hypomorphic Tie1 allele resulted in abnormal lymphatic patterning and architecture, decreased lymphatic draining efficiency, and ultimately, embryonic demise. Here we report that Tie1 is present uniformly throughout the lymphatics and from late embryonic/early postnatal stages, becomes more restricted to lymphatic valve regions. To investigate later events of lymphatic development, we employed Cre-loxP recombination utilizing a floxed Tie1 allele and an Nfatc1Cre line, to provide loxP excision predominantly in lymphatic endothelium and developing valves. Interestingly, unlike the early prenatal defects previously described by ubiquitous endothelial deletion, excision of Tie1 with Nfatc1Cre resulted in abnormal lymphatic defects in postnatal mice and was characterized by agenesis of lymphatic valves and a deficiency of collecting lymphatic vessels. Attenuation of Tie1 signaling in lymphatic endothelium prevented initiation of lymphatic valve specification by Prox1 high expression lymphatic endothelial cells that is associated with the onset of turbulent flow in the lymphatic circulation. Our findings reveal a fundamental role for Tie1 signaling during lymphatic vessel remodeling and valve morphogenesis and implicate it as a candidate gene involved in primary lymphedema.


Conditional knockout; Lymphatic valve; Lymphatic vessel remodeling; Lymphovenous valve; Prox1; Tie1

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