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Nat Neurosci. 2006 Mar;9(3):340-8. Epub 2006 Feb 5.

VEGF-C is a trophic factor for neural progenitors in the vertebrate embryonic brain.

Author information

1
Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM), U711, Paris F-75013, France.

Abstract

Vascular endothelial growth factor C (VEGF-C) was first identified as a regulator of the vascular system, where it is required for the development of lymphatic vessels. Here we report actions of VEGF-C in the central nervous system. We detected the expression of the VEGF-C receptor VEGFR-3 in neural progenitor cells in Xenopus laevis and mouse embryos. In Xenopus tadpole VEGF-C knockdowns and in mice lacking Vegfc, the proliferation of neural progenitors expressing VEGFR-3 was severely reduced, in the absence of intracerebral blood vessel defects. In addition, Vegfc-deficient mouse embryos showed a selective loss of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) in the embryonic optic nerve. In vitro, VEGF-C stimulated the proliferation of OPCs expressing VEGFR-3 and nestin-positive ventricular neural cells. VEGF-C thus has a new, evolutionary conserved function as a growth factor selectively required by neural progenitor cells expressing its receptor VEGFR-3.

PMID:
16462734
DOI:
10.1038/nn1646
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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