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      Requisite Role of p38 MAPK in Mural Cell Recruitment during Angiogenesis in the Rat Aorta Model

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          Abstract

          During the early stage of angiogenesis, neovascular sprouts are composed primarily of endothelial cells. As they mature, microvessels acquire a coating of mural cells, which are critical for the development and maintenance of a functional vasculature. Though growth factor regulation of mural cell recruitment has been extensively investigated, the intracellular signaling events involved in this process remain poorly understood. Among the intracellular kinases implicated in angiogenesis, the p38 MAPK has been shown to transduce signals critical for vascular remodeling and maturation. The rat aorta model of angiogenesis was used to further investigate the role of this signaling pathway in the recruitment of mural cells during angiogenesis. The p38 MAPK inhibitor SB203580 selectively blocked mural cell recruitment, resulting in the formation of naked endothelial tubes without mural cells. SB203580 inhibited angiopoietin-1-induced mural cell recruitment without influencing angiopoietin-1-stimulated endothelial sprouting. Adenoviral vector-mediated expression of a dominant negative form of p38 MAPK significantly reduced mural cell recruitment, whereas overexpression of a constitutively activated form of MKK6, an upstream activator of p38 MAPK, increased mural cell number. These results indicate that the p38 MAPK signaling pathway plays a critical role in mural cell recruitment during neovascularization and may represent a therapeutic target in angiogenesis-related disorders.

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          Most cited references 10

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          Pericyte loss and microaneurysm formation in PDGF-B-deficient mice.

          Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-B-deficient mouse embryos were found to lack microvascular pericytes, which normally form part of the capillary wall, and they developed numerous capillary microaneurysms that ruptured at late gestation. Endothelial cells of the sprouting capillaries in the mutant mice appeared to be unable to attract PDGF-Rbeta-positive pericyte progenitor cells. Pericytes may contribute to the mechanical stability of the capillary wall. Comparisons made between PDGF null mouse phenotypes suggest a general role for PDGFs in the development of myofibroblasts.
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            Essential role for p38alpha mitogen-activated protein kinase in placental angiogenesis.

            The p38 family of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) mediates signaling in response to environmental stresses and inflammatory cytokines, but the requirements for the p38 MAPK pathway in normal mammalian development have not been elucidated. Here, we show that targeted disruption of the p38alpha MAPK gene results in homozygous embryonic lethality because of severe defects in placental development. Although chorioallantoic placentation is initiated appropriately in p38alpha null homozygotes, placental defects are manifest at 10.5 days postcoitum as nearly complete loss of the labyrinth layer and significant reduction of the spongiotrophoblast. In particular, p38alpha mutant placentas display lack of vascularization of the labyrinth layer as well as increased rates of apoptosis, consistent with a defect in placental angiogenesis. Furthermore, p38alpha mutants display abnormal angiogenesis in the embryo proper as well as in the visceral yolk sac. Thus, our results indicate a requirement for p38alpha MAPK in diploid trophoblast development and placental vascularization and suggest a more general role for p38 MAPK signaling in embryonic angiogenesis.
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              A role for p38(MAPK)/HSP27 pathway in smooth muscle cell migration.

              Smooth muscle cells are exposed to growth factors and cytokines that contribute to pathological states including airway hyperresponsiveness, atherosclerosis, angiogenesis, smooth muscle hypertrophy, and hyperplasia. A common feature of several of these conditions is migration of smooth muscle beyond the initial boundary of the organ. Signal transduction pathways activated by extracellular signals that instigate migration are mostly undefined in smooth muscles. We measured migration of cultured tracheal myocytes in response to platelet-derived growth factor, interleukin-1beta, and transforming growth factor-beta. Cellular migration was blocked by SB203580, an inhibitor of p38(MAPK). Time course experiments demonstrated increased phosphorylation of p38(MAPK). Activation of p38(MAPK) resulted in the phosphorylation of HSP27 (heat shock protein 27), which may modulate F-actin polymerization. Inhibition of p38(MAPK) activity inhibited phosphorylation of HSP27. Adenovirus-mediated expression of activated mutant MAPK kinase 6b(E), an upstream activator for p38(MAPK), increased cell migration, whereas overexpression of p38alpha MAPK dominant negative mutant and an HSP27 phosphorylation mutant blocked cell migration completely. The results indicate that activation of the p38(MAPK) pathway by growth factors and proinflammatory cytokines regulates smooth muscle cell migration and may contribute to pathological states involving smooth muscle dysfunction.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                JVR
                J Vasc Res
                10.1159/issn.1018-1172
                Journal of Vascular Research
                S. Karger AG
                1018-1172
                1423-0135
                2003
                April 2003
                19 June 2003
                : 40
                : 2
                : 140-148
                Affiliations
                aDepartment of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle, Wash., bDepartment of Immunology, IMM-32, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, Calif., and cDivision of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, VA Puget Sound Health Care System, Seattle, Wash., USA
                Article
                70711 J Vasc Res 2003;40:140–148
                10.1159/000070711
                12808350
                © 2003 S. Karger AG, Basel

                Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

                Page count
                Figures: 5, References: 29, Pages: 9
                Categories
                Research Paper

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