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      An Anti-VEGF Ribozyme Embedded within the Adenoviral VAI Sequence Inhibits Glioblastoma Cell Angiogenic Potential in vitro

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          Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) plays an important role in tumor angiogenesis, where it functions as one of the major angiogenic factors sustaining growth and draining catabolites. In this study, we developed an anti-VEGF ribozyme targeted to the 5′ part of human VEGF mRNA. We endowed this ribozyme with an additional feature expected to improve its activity in vivo, by cloning it into a VAI transcriptional cassette. VAI is originally part of the adenovirus genome, and is characterized by high transcription rates, good stability due to its strong secondary structure and cytoplasmic localization. Transfection of U87 human glioblastoma cells with plasmid vectors encoding for this ribozyme resulted in a strong (–56%) reduction of VEGF secreted in the extracellular medium, indicating a good biological activity of the ribozyme. Moreover, this reduction in VEGF secretion had the important functional consequence of drastically diminishing the formation of tube-like structures of human umbilical vascular endothelial cells in a Matrigel in vitro angiogenesis assay. In conclusion, our VAI-embedded anti-VEGF ribozyme is a good inhibitor of angiogenesis in vitro, in a glioblastoma cell context. Thus, it may represent a useful tool for future applications in vivo, for antiangiogenic gene therapy of glioblastoma and of highly vascularized tumors.

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          Most cited references 15

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          Single-step method of RNA isolation by acid guanidinium thiocyanate-phenol-chloroform extraction.

          A new method of total RNA isolation by a single extraction with an acid guanidinium thiocyanate-phenol-chloroform mixture is described. The method provides a pure preparation of undegraded RNA in high yield and can be completed within 4 h. It is particularly useful for processing large numbers of samples and for isolation of RNA from minute quantities of cells or tissue samples.
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            Glioblastoma multiforme: The terminator

             E Holland (2000)
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              Pleiotrophin signaling through anaplastic lymphoma kinase is rate-limiting for glioblastoma growth.

              Glioblastoma multiforme is the most common highly aggressive human brain cancer, and receptor tyrosine kinases have been implicated in the progression of this malignancy. We have recently identified anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) as a tyrosine kinase receptor for pleiotrophin, a secreted growth factor that is highly expressed during embryonic brain development and in tumors of the central nervous system. Here we report on the contribution of pleiotrophin-ALK signaling to glioblastoma growth. We found ALK overexpressed in human glioblastoma relative to normal brain and detected ALK mRNA in glioblastoma cell lines. We reduced the endogenous ALK in glioblastoma cells by ribozyme targeting and demonstrated that this prevents pleiotrophin-stimulated phosphorylation of the anti-apoptotic protein Akt. Furthermore, this depletion of ALK reduced tumor growth of xenografts in athymic nude mice and prolonged survival of the animals because of increased apoptosis in the tumors. These findings directly implicate ALK signaling as a rate-limiting factor in the growth of glioblastoma multiforme and suggest potential utility of therapeutic targeting of ALK.

                Author and article information

                J Vasc Res
                Journal of Vascular Research
                S. Karger AG
                June 2004
                30 June 2004
                : 41
                : 3
                : 220-228
                Departments of aExperimental Medicine and Biochemical Sciences and bInternal Medicine and Endocrinology, University of Rome ‘Tor Vergata’, Rome, Italy
                77777 J Vasc Res 2004;41:220–228
                © 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 6, Tables: 1, References: 41, Pages: 9
                Research Paper


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