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J Clin Invest. 2019 Jul 23;130:4332-4349. doi: 10.1172/JCI121955.

Lysophosphatidic acid-induced YAP/TAZ activation promotes developmental angiogenesis by repressing Notch ligand Dll4.

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Department of Immunology, Akita University Graduate School of Medicine, Akita, Japan.
Department of Vascular Molecular Physiology, Kanazawa University Graduate School of Medicine, Ishikawa, Japan.
Laboratory Animal Resource Center, University of Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan.


Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) is a potent lipid mediator with various biological functions mediated through six G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), LPA1-6. Previous studies have demonstrated that LPA-Gα12/Gα13 signaling plays an important role in embryonic vascular development. However, the responsible LPA receptors and underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, we show a critical role of LPA4 and LPA6 in developmental angiogenesis. In mice, Lpa4;Lpa6 double knockout (DKO) embryos were lethal due to global vascular deficiencies, and endothelial cell (EC)-specific Lpa4;Lpa6 DKO retinas had impaired sprouting angiogenesis. Mechanistically, LPA activated the transcriptional regulators YAP and TAZ through LPA4/LPA6-mediated Gα12/Gα13-Rho-ROCK signaling in ECs. YAP/TAZ knockdown increased β-catenin- and Notch intracellular domain (NICD)-mediated endothelial expression of the Notch ligand delta-like 4 (DLL4). Fibrin gel sprouting assay revealed that LPA4/LPA6, Gα12/Gα13, or YAP/TAZ knockdown consistently blocked EC sprouting, which was rescued by a Notch inhibitor. Of note, the inhibition of Notch signaling also ameliorated impaired retinal angiogenesis in EC-specific Lpa4;Lpa6 DKO mice. Overall, these results suggest that the Gα12/Gα13-coupled receptors LPA4 and LPA6 synergistically regulate endothelial Dll4 expression through YAP/TAZ activation. This could in part account for the mechanism of YAP/TAZ-mediated developmental angiogenesis. Our findings provide a novel insight into the biology of GPCR-activated YAP/TAZ.


Angiogenesis; G-protein coupled receptors; endothelial cells

[Available on 2020-01-01]
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