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Blood. 2010 Apr 1;115(13):2709-18. doi: 10.1182/blood-2009-05-223776. Epub 2010 Feb 2.

c-Abl mediates endothelial apoptosis induced by inhibition of integrins alphavbeta3 and alphavbeta5 and by disruption of actin.

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Department of Pediatrics, Neil Bogart Memorial Laboratories, Division of Hematology-Oncology, Saban Research Institute at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles, USA.


Inhibition of integrins alphavbeta3 and alphavbeta5 in human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMECs) by the function-blocking peptide RGDfV induces loss of spreading on vitronectin, cell detachment, and apoptosis. We demonstrate that cell detachment is not required for apoptosis because plating on bovine serum albumin-blocked poly-L-lysine (allows attachment, but not integrin ligation and cell spreading) also induced apoptosis. Latrunculin B (LatB), which inhibits F-actin polymerization, induced transient loss of HBMEC spreading on vitronectin, but not their detachment, and induced apoptosis despite recovery of cell spreading. However, LatB did not cause apoptosis in 5 tumor cell lines. In HBMECs, both LatB and RGDfV induced transient Y412 and Y245 phosphorylation of endogenous c-Abl, a nonreceptor tyrosine kinase that reciprocally regulates F-actin. LatB also induced nuclear translocation of c-Abl in HBMECs. STI-571 (imatinib), a targeted therapy for BCR-ABL1(+) leukemias and inhibitor of c-Abl, platelet-derived growth factor receptor, and c-Kit, decreased endothelial apoptosis. LatB-induced HBMEC apoptosis, and its inhibition by STI-571 also occurred in a 3-dimensional collagen model, supporting physiologic relevance. Last, siRNA to c-Abl (but not nonspecific siRNA) also inhibited RGDfV- and LatB-induced apoptosis. Thus, endogenous c-Abl mediates endothelial apoptosis induced by inhibition of integrins alphavbeta3/alphavbeta5 or by LatB-induced disruption of F-actin.

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