Svetlana Gingis-Velitski

Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, H̱efa, Haifa District, Israel

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Publications (18)92.12 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Acute chemotherapy can induce rapid bone-marrow derived pro-angiogenic cell (BMDC) mobilization and tumor homing, contributing to tumor regrowth. In order to study the contribution of tumor cells to tumor regrowth following therapy, we focused on tumor-derived microparticles (TMPs). EMT/6 murine-mammary carcinoma cells exposed to paclitaxel chemotherapy exhibited an increased number of TMPs and significantly altered their angiogenic properties. Similarly, breast cancer patients had increased levels of plasma MUC-1+TMPs following chemotherapy. In addition, TMPs from cells exposed to paclitaxel induced higher BMDC mobilization and colonization but had no increased effect on angiogenesis in Matrigel plugs and tumors than TMPs from untreated cells. Since TMPs abundantly express osteopontin, a protein known to participate in BMDC trafficking, the impact of osteopontin-depleted TMPs on BMDC mobilization, colonization, and tumor angiogenesis was examined. While EMT/6 tumors grown in mice inoculated with osteopontin-depleted TMPs had lower numbers of BMDC infiltration and microvessel density compared with EMT/6 tumors grown in mice inoculated with wild-type TMPs, no significant difference in tumor growth was seen between the two groups. However, when BMDCs from paclitaxel-treated mice were injected into wild-type EMT/6-bearing mice, a substantial increase in tumor growth and BMDC infiltration was detected compared to osteopontin-depleted EMT/6-bearing mice injected with BMDCs from paclitaxel-treated mice. Collectively, our results suggest that osteopontin expressed by TMPs play an important role in BMDC mobilization and colonization of tumors, but is not sufficient to enhance the angiogenic activity of BMDCs in tumors. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    International Journal of Cancer 12/2013; · 6.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We previously reported that the host response to certain chemotherapies can induce primary tumor regrowth, angiogenesis, and even metastases in mice, but the possible impact of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A) therapy in this context has not been fully explored. We therefore used combinations of anti-VEGF-A with chemotherapy on various tumor models in mice including primary tumors, experimental lung metastases, and spontaneous lung metastases of 4T1-breast and CT26-colon murine cancer cell lines. Our results show that a combined treatment with anti-VEGF-A and folinic acid/5-fluorouracil/oxaliplatin (FOLFOX) but not with anti-VEGF-A and gemcitabine/cisplatinum (Gem/CDDP) enhances the treatment outcome partly due to reduced angiogenesis, in both primary tumors and in experimental lung metastases models. However, neither treatment group exhibited an improved treatment outcome in the spontaneous lung metastases model nor were changes in endothelial cell numbers found at metastatic sites. Since chemotherapy has recently been shown to induce tumor cell invasion, we tested the invasion properties of tumor cells when exposed to plasma from FOLFOX-treated mice or cancer patients. While plasma from FOLFOX-treated mice or patients induced invasion properties of tumor cells, the combination of anti-VEGF-A and FOLFOX abrogated these effects, despite the reduced plasma VEGF-A levels detected in FOLFOX-treated mice. These results suggest that the therapeutic impact of antiangiogenic drugs varies in different tumor models, and that anti-VEGF-A therapy can block the invasion properties of tumor cells in response to chemotherapy. These results may implicate an additional therapeutic role for anti-VEGF-A when combined with chemotherapy.
    Molecular Cancer Therapeutics 10/2013; · 5.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tumor relapse and tumor cell repopulation has been explained partially by the drug-free break period between successive conventional treatments. Strategies to overcome tumor relapse have been proposed, such as the use of chemotherapeutic drugs or radiation in small, frequent fractionated doses without an extended break period between treatment intervals. Yet, tumors usually acquire resistance and eventually escape the therapy. Several mechanisms have been proposed to explain the resistance of tumors to therapy, one of which involves the cancer stem cell or tumor-initiating cell (TIC) concept. TICs are believed to resist many conventional therapies, in part due to their slow proliferation and self-renewal capacities. Therefore, emerging efforts to eradicate TICs are being undertaken. Here we show that treatment with Photofrin II, among the most frequently used photosensitizers, sensitized a TIC-enriched U-87MG human glioblastoma cell to radiation, and improve treatment outcome when used in combination with radiotherapy. A U-87MG tumor cell population enriched with radiation-resistant TICs becomes radio-sensitive, and an inhibition of cell proliferation and an increase in apoptosis are found in the presence of Photofrin II. Furthermore, U-87MG tumors implanted in mice treated with Photofrin II and radiation exhibit a significant reduction in angiogenesis and vasculogenesis, and an increased percentage of apoptotic TICs when compared with tumors grown in mice treated with radiation alone. Collectively, our results offer a new possible explanation for the therapeutic effects of radiosensitizing agents, and suggest that combinatorial treatment modalities can effectively prolong treatment outcome of glioblastoma tumors by inhibiting tumor growth mediated by TICs.
    Cancer biology & therapy 10/2012; 14(1). · 3.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tumor-initiating cells (TICs) are a subtype of tumor cells believed to be critical for initiating tumorigenesis. We sought to determine the angiogenic properties of TICs in different tumor types including U-87MG (glioblastoma), HT29 (colon), MCF7 (breast), A549 (non-small-cell lung), and PANC1 (pancreatic) cancers. Long-term cultures grown either as monolayers ("TIC-low") or as nonadherent tumor spheres ("TIC-high") were generated. The TIC-high fractions exhibited increased expression of stem cell surface markers, high aldehyde dehydrogenase activity, high expression of p21, and resistance to standard chemotherapy in comparison to TIC-low fractions. Furthermore, TICs from U-87MG and HT29 but not from MCF7, A549, and PANC1 tumor types possess increased angiogenic activity. Consequently, the efficacy of vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A) neutralizing antibody is limited only to those tumors that are dependent on VEGF-A activity. In addition, such therapy had little or reversed antiangiogenic effects on tumors that do not necessarily rely on VEGF-dependent angiogenesis. Differential angiogenic activity and antiangiogenic therapy sensitivity were also observed in TICs of the same tumor type, suggesting redundant angiogenic pathways. Collectively, our results suggest that the efficacy of antiangiogenic drugs is dependent on the angiogenic properties of TICs and, therefore, can serve as a possible biomarker to predict antiangiogenic treatment efficacy.
    Stem Cells 07/2012; 30(9):1831-41. · 7.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Results obtained from preclinical studies have shown that endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) play a crucial role in tumor growth and metastasis. In the clinic, EPCs are present in the peripheral blood of cancer patients in higher numbers than in healthy subjects. These cells are mobilized from the bone marrow compartment to the periphery in response to certain cytokines and growth factors. Growing body of evidence suggests that following acute cytotoxic drug therapy levels of circulating EPCs (CEPs) can change significantly in both mouse and human. These changes may predict the efficacy of some anticancer drug treatments. Therefore, the validation and standardization of a procedure to detect CEPs and monitor their kinetic is an important step towards the use of such cells as a possible biomarker to predict clinical outcome. In this chapter, we describe a flow cytometry technique to detect CEPs obtained from human blood specimens stored in both fresh and frozen conditions.
    Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) 01/2012; 904:165-72. · 1.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mounting evidence suggests that bone marrow-derived cells (BMDC) contribute to tumor growth, angiogenesis, and metastasis. In acute reactions to cancer therapy, several types of BMDCs are rapidly mobilized to home tumors. Although this host reaction to therapy can promote tumor regrowth, its contribution to metastasis has not been explored. To focus only on the effects of chemotherapy on the host, we studied non-tumor-bearing mice. Plasma from animals treated with the chemotherapy paclitaxel induced angiogenesis, migration, and invasion of tumor cells along with host cell colonization. Lesser effects were seen with the chemotherapy gemcitabine. Conditioned medium from BMDCs and plasma from chemotherapy-treated mice each promoted metastatic properties in tumor cells by inducing matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP9) and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. In mice in which Lewis lung carcinoma cells were injected intravenously, treatment with paclitaxel, but not gemcitabine or vehicle, accelerated metastases in a manner that could be blocked by an MMP9 inhibitor. Moreover, chimeric mice reconstituted with BMDC where MMP9 activity was attenuated did not support accelerated metastasis by carcinoma cells that were pretreated with chemotherapy before their introduction to host animals. Taken together, our findings illustrate how some chemotherapies can exert prometastatic effects that may confound treatment outcomes.
    Cancer Research 11/2011; 71(22):6986-96. · 8.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recombinant granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) is used to accelerate recovery from chemotherapy-induced myelosuppression. G-CSF has been recently shown to stimulate angiogenesis mediated by several types of bone marrow-derived cell populations. To investigate whether G-CSF may alter tumor response to therapy, we studied Lewis lung and EMT/6 breast carcinomas in mice treated with paclitaxel (PTX) chemotherapy in combination with G-CSF. We compared the results obtained to mice treated with PTX and AMD3100, a small-molecule drug antagonist of CXCR4 which, like G-CSF, can be used to mobilize hematopoietic cells. We show that PTX combined with G-CSF treatment facilitates revascularization, leading to an improvement in blood perfusion in LLC tumors, and a decrease in hypoxia in EMT/6 tumors, thus enhancing tumor growth in comparison to PTX or PTX and AMD3100 therapies. We found that hemangiocytes but not Gr-1(+) CD11b(+) cells colonize EMT/6 tumors after treatment with PTX and G-CSF, but not PTX and AMD3100, and therefore may contribute to angiogenesis. However, increases in hemangiocyte colonization were not observed in LLC PTX and G-CSF-treated tumors, suggesting distinct mechanisms of tumor revascularization after G-CSF. Overall, our observations suggest that despite its known considerable clinical benefits, G-CSF might contribute to tumor revascularization by various mechanisms, and diminish the antitumor activity of chemotherapy, an effect that can be prevented by AMD3100.
    Blood 06/2011; 118(12):3426-35. · 9.06 Impact Factor
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    Tali Voloshin, Svetlana Gingis-Velitski, Yuval Shaked
    Cancer biology & therapy 10/2010; 10(7):686-8. · 3.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is a mammalian endo-beta-d-glucuronidase that can cleave heparan sulfate side chains, an activity strongly implicated in tumor cell dissemination. The current study aimed to identify and characterize heparanase splice variants. LEADS, Compugen's alternative splicing modeling platform (Compugen, Tel Aviv, Israel), was used to search for splice variants in silico; tumor-derived cell lines (i.e., CAG myeloma) and tumor biopsies were utilized to validate T5 expression in vivo; signaling (i.e., Src phosphorylation) was evaluated following T5 gene silencing or overexpression and correlated with cell proliferation, colony formation, and tumor xenograft development. A novel spliced form of human heparanase, termed T5, was identified. In this splice variant, 144 bp of intron 5 are joined with exon 4, which results in a truncated, enzymatically inactive protein. T5 overexpression resulted in increased cell proliferation and larger colonies in soft agar, mediated by Src activation. Furthermore, T5 overexpression markedly enhanced tumor xenograft development. T5 expression is up-regulated in 75% of human renal cell carcinoma biopsies examined, which suggests that this splice variant is clinically relevant. Controls included cells overexpressing wild-type heparanase or an empty plasmid and normal-looking tissue adjacent the carcinoma lesion. T5 is a novel functional splice variant of human heparanase endowed with protumorigenic characteristics.-Barash, U., Cohen-Kaplan, V., Arvatz, G., Gingis-Velitski, S., Levy-Adam, F., Nativ, O., Shemesh, R., Ayalon-Sofer, M., Ilan, N., Vlodavsky, I. A novel human heparanase splice variant, T5, endowed with protumorigenic characteristics.
    The FASEB Journal 12/2009; 24(4):1239-48. · 5.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is an endo-beta-d-glucuronidase capable of cleaving heparan sulfate, activity that is strongly implicated in cellular invasion associated with tumor metastasis, angiogenesis, and inflammation. In addition, heparanase was noted to exert biological functions apparently independent of its enzymatic activity, enhancing the phosphorylation of selected protein kinases and inducing gene transcription. A predicted three-dimensional structure of constitutively active heparanase clearly delineates a TIM-barrel fold previously anticipated for the enzyme. Interestingly, the model also revealed the existence of a COOH-terminal domain (C-domain) that apparently is not an integral part of the TIM-barrel fold. We provide evidence that the C-domain is critical for heparanase enzymatic activity and secretion. Moreover, the C-domain was found to mediate nonenzymatic functions of heparanase, facilitating Akt phosphorylation, cell proliferation, and tumor xenograft progression. These findings support the notion that heparanase exerts enzymatic activity-independent functions, and identify, for the first time, a protein domain responsible for heparanase-mediated signaling. Inhibitors directed against the C-domain, combined with inhibitors of heparanase enzymatic activity, are expected to neutralize heparanase functions and to profoundly affect tumor growth, angiogenesis, and metastasis.
    Cancer Research 03/2009; 69(5):1758-67. · 8.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is an endoglycosidase which cleaves heparan sulfate and hence participates in degradation and remodeling of the extracellular matrix. Importantly, heparanase activity correlated with the metastatic potential of tumor-derived cells, attributed to enhanced cell dissemination as a consequence of heparan sulfate cleavage and remodeling of the extracellular matrix barrier. Heparanase has been characterized as a glycoprotein, yet glycan biochemical analysis was not performed to date. Here, we applied the Qproteometrade mark GlycoArray kit to perform glycan analysis of heparanase, and compared the kit results with the more commonly used biochemical analyses. We employed fibroblasts isolated from patients with I-cell disease (mucolipidosis II), fibroblasts deficient of low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein and fibroblasts lacking mannose 6-phosphate receptor, to explore the role of mannose 6-phosphate in heparanase uptake. Iodinated heparanase has been utilized to calculate binding affinity. We provide evidence for hierarchy of binding to cellular receptors as a function of heparanase concentration. We report the existence of a high affinity, low abundant (i.e., low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein, mannose 6-phosphate receptor), as well as a low affinity, high abundant (i.e., heparan sulfate proteoglycan) receptors that mediate heparanase binding, and suggest that these receptors co-operate to establish high affinity binding sites for heparanase, thus maintaining extracellular retention of the enzyme tightly regulated.
    The International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology 02/2008; 40(3):530-42. · 4.15 Impact Factor
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    Svetlana Gingis-Velitski, Rivka Ishai-Michaeli, Israel Vlodavsky, Neta Ilan
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is a mammalian endo-beta-D-glucuronidase capable of cleaving HS side chains at a limited number of sites, activity that is strongly implicated in tumor metastasis, neovascularization, inflammation, and autoimmunity. Clinically, up-regulation of heparanase mRNA and protein expression has been documented in a variety of primary human tumors, correlating with reduced postoperative survival and increased lymph node and distant metastasis, thus providing strong clinical support for the prometastatic feature of the enzyme and making it an attractive target for the development of anticancer and anti-inflammatory drugs. Screening a panel of monoclonal antibodies for their ability to inhibit heparanase enzymatic activity, we noted that one hybridoma, 6F8, exhibited the opposite effect and significantly enhanced heparanase activity. Here, we provide evidence that antibody 6F8 enhances the activity of recombinant and cellular heparanase, facilitates invasion of tumor-derived cells in vitro, and improves wound healing in a mouse punch model in vivo. These results support a role of heparanase in the course of wound healing and, moreover, suggest that monoclonal antibodies can be applied clinically for the enhancement, rather than inhibition, of certain enzymes.
    The FASEB Journal 01/2008; 21(14):3986-93. · 5.70 Impact Factor
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    Olga Ben-Zaken, Svetlana Gingis-Velitski, Israel Vlodavsky, Neta Ilan
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    ABSTRACT: The endoglycosidase heparanase is the predominant enzyme that degrades heparan sulfate side chains of heparan sulfate proteoglycans, activity that is strongly implicated in tumor metastasis. Apart of its well characterized enzymatic activity, heparanase was noted to exert also enzymatic-independent functions. Among these is the induction of Akt/PKB phosphorylation noted in endothelial- and tumor-derived cells. Protein domains of heparanase required for signaling were not identified to date, nor were identified heparanase binding proteins/receptors capable of transmitting heparanase signals. Here, we examined the possible function of mannose 6-phosphate receptor (MPR) and low-density lipoprotein-receptor related protein (LRP), recently implicated in cellular uptake of heparanase, as heparanase receptors mediating Akt phosphorylation. We found that heparanase addition to MPR- and LRP-deficient fibroblasts elicited Akt activation indistinguishable from control fibroblasts. In contrast, disruption of lipid rafts abrogated Akt/PKB phosphorylation following heparanase addition. These results suggest that lipid raft-resident receptor mediates heparanase signaling.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 11/2007; 361(4):829-34. · 2.41 Impact Factor
  • Thrombosis Research - THROMB RES. 01/2007; 120.
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is a mammalian endo-beta-D-glucuronidase that cleaves heparan sulfate side chains at a limited number of sites. Such enzymatic activity is thought to participate in degradation and remodeling of the extracellular matrix and to facilitate cell invasion associated with tumor metastasis, angiogenesis and inflammation. Traditionally, heparanase activity was well correlated with the metastatic potential of a large number of tumor-derived cell types. More recently, heparanase upregulation has been documented in an increasing number of primary human tumors, correlating with poor postoperative survival and increased tumor vascularity. Here, we employed anti-heparanase 733 polyclonal antibody that preferentially recognizes the 50 kDa active heparanase subunit over the 65 kDa proenzyme, as well as anti-heparanase 92.4 monoclonal antibody that recognizes both the latent and the active enzyme, to follow heparanase expression, processing and localization throughout the adenoma-carcinoma transition of the colon epithelium. Normal (nondysplastic) mucosa of the large bowel near epithelial neoplasms, as well as areas of mild dysplasia in adenomas, exhibited a strong reactivity with antibody 733 that became even stronger in foci of moderate dysplasia. Interestingly, although reactivity with antibody 733 was markedly reduced in severe dysplasia and in colorectal carcinoma, response to antibody 92.4 exhibited the opposite trend and staining intensities increased in parallel with tumor stage, the highest being in carcinoma cells. Involvement of latent heparanase (detected by 92.4, but not by 733 antibody) in tumor progression was suggested by activation of the Akt/PKB signal transduction pathway upon heparanase overexpression or exogenous addition to HT29 human colon carcinoma cells. These results suggest that heparanase expression is induced during colon carcinogenesis, and that its processing, conformation and localization are tightly regulated during the course of colon adenoma-carcinoma progression.
    Modern Pathology 07/2006; 19(6):878-88. · 5.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is a mammalian endoglycosidase that degrades heparan sulfate (HS) at specific intrachain sites, an activity that is strongly implicated in cell dissemination associated with metastasis and inflammation. In addition to its structural role in extracellular matrix assembly and integrity, HS sequesters a multitude of polypeptides that reside in the extracellular matrix as a reservoir. A variety of growth factors, cytokines, chemokines, and enzymes can be released by heparanase activity and profoundly affect cell and tissue function. Thus, heparanase bioavailability, accessibility, and activity should be kept tightly regulated. We provide evidence that HS is not only a substrate for, but also a regulator of, heparanase. Addition of heparin or xylosides to cell cultures resulted in a pronounced accumulation of, heparanase in the culture medium, whereas sodium chlorate had no such effect. Moreover, cellular uptake of heparanase was markedly reduced in HS-deficient CHO-745 mutant cells, heparan sulfate proteoglycan-deficient HT-29 colon cancer cells, and heparinase-treated cells. We also studied the heparanase biosynthetic route and found that the half-life of the active enzyme is approximately 30 h. This and previous localization studies suggest that heparanase resides in the endosomal/lysosomal compartment for a relatively long period of time and is likely to play a role in the normal turnover of HS. Co-localization studies and cell fractionation following heparanase addition have identified syndecan family members as candidate molecules responsible for heparanase uptake, providing an efficient mechanism that limits extracellular accumulation and function of heparanase.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 11/2004; 279(42):44084-92. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is a heparan sulfate degrading endoglycosidase participating in extracellular matrix degradation and remodeling. Heparanase is synthesized as a 65 kDa non-active precursor that subsequently undergoes proteolytic cleavage, yielding 8 kDa and 50 kDa protein subunits that heterodimerize to form an active enzyme. The protease responsible for heparanase processing is currently unknown, as is the sub-cellular processing site. In this study, we characterize an antibody (733) that preferentially recognizes the active 50 kDa heparanase form as compared to the non-active 65 kDa heparanase precursor. We have utilized this and other anti-heparanase antibodies to study the cellular localization of the latent 65 kDa and active 50 kDa heparanase forms during uptake and processing of exogenously added heparanase. Interestingly, not only the processed 50 kDa, but also the 65 kDa heparanase precursor was localized to perinuclear vesicles, suggesting that heparanase processing occurs in lysosomes. Indeed, heparanase processing was completely inhibited by chloroquine and bafilomycin A1, inhibitors of lysosome proteases. Similarly, processing of membrane-targeted heparanase was also chloroquine-sensitive, further ruling out the plasma membrane as the heparanase processing site. Finally, we provide evidence that antibody 733 partially neutralizes the enzymatic activity of heparanase, suggesting that the N-terminal region of the molecule is involved in assuming an active conformation. Monoclonal antibodies directed to this region are likely to provide specific heparanase inhibitors and hence assist in resolving heparanase functions under normal and pathological conditions.
    Journal of Cell Science 06/2004; 117(Pt 11):2249-58. · 5.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Heparanase is a mammalian endoglycosidase that degrades heparan sulfate (HS) at specific intra-chain sites. Blood-borne neutrophils, macrophages, mast cells, and platelets exhibit heparanase activity that is thought to be stored in specific granules. The degranulated heparanase is implicated in extravasation of metastatic tumor cells and activated cells of the immune system. Degranulation and heparanase release in response to an inflammatory stimulus or platelet activation would facilitate cellular extravasation directly, by altering the composition and structural integrity of the extracellular matrix, or indirectly, by releasing HS-bound proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines. We hypothesized that in addition to such indirect effect, the released heparanase may also locally affect and activate neighboring cells such as endothelial cells. Here, we provide evidence that addition of the 65-kDa latent heparanase to endothelial cells enhances Akt signaling. Heparanase-mediated Akt phosphorylation was independent of its enzymatic activity or the presence of cell membrane HS proteoglycans and was augmented by heparin. Moreover, addition of heparanase stimulated phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-dependent endothelial cell migration and invasion. These results suggest, for the first time, that heparanase activates endothelial cells and elicits angiogenic responses directly. This effect appears to be mediated by as yet unidentified heparanase receptor.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2004; 279(22):23536-41. · 4.65 Impact Factor