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Exp Cell Res. 1998 Feb 1;238(2):354-8.

Regulation of vascular endothelial growth factor expression by cAMP in rat aortic smooth muscle cells.

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Faculté de Médecine Xavier Bichat, INSERM U460, 16, rue H. Huchard, Paris, 75018, France.


Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is an endothelial cell mitogen which stimulates angiogenesis. VEGF is regulated by multiple factors such as hypoxia, phorbol esters, and growth factors. However, data concerning the expression of VEGF in the different vascular cell types and its regulation by cAMP are not available. In the present study, we have investigated the effect of adenylate cyclase activation on VEGF mRNA expression in rat vascular cells in primary culture. Basal VEGF expression is greater in smooth muscle cells than in endothelial cells and fibroblasts. A 4-h treatment with forskolin (10(-5) M) induced a 2-fold stimulation of VEGF mRNA expression in smooth muscle cells and fibroblasts, but, in contrast, did not affect VEGF expression in endothelial cells. In smooth muscle cells, a pharmacologically induced increase in intracellular cAMP levels using iloprost or isoprenaline led to a rise in VEGF mRNA expression comparable to that induced by forskolin. Adenosine, which increases cAMP levels in smooth muscle cells, also increases VEGF expression. Moreover, the 2.2-fold stimulation of VEGF expression by adenosine was enhanced following a cotreatment with cobalt chloride (a hypoxia miming agent). The observed additive effect (4.3-fold increase) suggests that these two factors, hypoxia and adenosine, regulate VEGF mRNA expression in smooth muscle cells by independent mechanisms.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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