MAPK/ERK signalling mediates VEGF‐induced bone marrow stem cell differentiation into endothelial cell

Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine (Impact Factor: 3.7). 02/2008; 12(6a):2395 - 2406. DOI: 10.1111/j.1582-4934.2008.00266.x

ABSTRACT Multi-potent adult progenitor cells (MAPCs) differentiate into endothelial cells (ECs) in the presence of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). The mechanism(s) of VEGF-induced differentiation of MAPCs to ECs are not yet known. We, therefore, examined the role of mitogen-activated protein kinase/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (p42/44-MAPK/ERK1/2) signalling in endothelial differentiation from bone marrow stem cells. We observed that VEGF stimulation of MAPCs for 14 days results in a significant expression of endothelial-specific gene and/or proteins including von Willebrand factor (vWF), vascular endothelial-cadherin (VE-cadherin), VEGF receptor-2 (VEGFR2), and CD31. Up-regulation of EC-specific markers was accompanied by a cobblestone morphology, expression of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), and Dil-Ac-LDL uptake, typical for EC morphology and function. VEGF induced a sustained activation of p42 MAPK/ERK, but not that of p44 MAPK/ERK during the course of MAPCs differentiation in a time-dependent manner up to 14 days. VEGF-induced activation of p42 MAPK/ERK also led to the nuclear translocation of MAPK/ERK1/2. Incubation of MAPCs with MAPK/ERK1/2 phosphorylation inhibitor PD98059 blocked the sustained VEGF-induced MAPK/ERK1/2 phosphorylation as well as its nuclear translocation in the differentiating MAPCs. Inhibition of MAPK/ERK1/2 phosphorylation by PD98059 also blocked the expression of EC-specific genes in these cells and their differentiation to ECs. These data suggest that VEGF induces MAPC differentiation into EC via a. MAPK/ERK1/2 signalling pathway-mediated mechanism in vitro.

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    Stem Cells and Development 01/2015; 24(11). DOI:10.1089/scd.2014.0253 · 4.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have the capacity to restore liver function by differentiating into hepatocyte like cells. However, the underlying mechanisms are not well understood. Here, we have investigated the signals involved in the hepatic differentiation of human umbilical cord-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hUCMSCs). hUCMSCs were treated with mouse fetal liver-conditioned medium (FLCM) to induce hepatic differentiation. Flow cytometry, reverse transcription PCR, real-time PCR, immunocytochemistry, and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) array were used to detect the expression of MSC- and hepotocyte-specific markers in FLCM-treated hUCMSCs. Urea production and cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) activity were used as indicators to evaluate liver cell characteristics. Raf/mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK)/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) was analyzed in hUCMSCs by Western blotting. Following FLCM treatment, expression of MSC-specific markers decreased, while hepatocyte-specific gene expression was increased. Urea production, albumin secretion, glycogen storage, and CYP3A4 activity were significantly enhanced in FLCM-treated cells. In addition, ERK1/2 phosphorylation was increased in a time-dependent manner through Raf/MEK/ERK pathway, and phosphorylation was sustained at a high level during hepatic induction. Inhibition of ERK1/2 activation by U0126 (an ERK1/2 inhibitor) and pFLAG-CMV-ERK1(K71R) (negative mutant of ERK1) reversed the expression of liver-specific genes in hUCMSCs and affected hepatic function significantly. In summary, this work shows that ERK1/2 phosphorylation plays an important role in inducing hepatic differentiation of hUCMSCs in FLCM. © 2015 by the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine.
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