Hongwei Shao

University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida, United States

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Publications (20)98.62 Total impact

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    Full-text · Article · May 2013 · Journal of Vascular Surgery
  • Z. Liu · Y. Tan · H. Shao · Y. Li · O.C. Velazquez

    No preview · Article · Feb 2013 · Journal of Surgical Research
  • Hongwei Shao · Qinghua Huang · Zhao-Jun Liu
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    ABSTRACT: The Notch signaling pathway is an evolutionarily conserved, intercellular signaling cascade. The Notch proteins are single-pass receptors that are activated upon interaction with the Delta (or Delta-like) and Jagged/Serrate families of membrane-bound ligands. Association of ligand-receptor leads to proteolytic cleavages that liberate the Notch intracellular domain (NICD) from the plasma membrane. The NICD translocates to the nucleus, where it forms a complex with the DNA-binding protein CSL, displacing a histone deacetylase (HDAc)-corepressor (CoR) complex from CSL. Components of a transcriptional complex, such as MAML1 and histone acetyltransferases (HATs), are recruited to the NICD-CSL complex, leading to the transcriptional activation of Notch target genes. The Notch signaling pathway plays a critical role in cell fate decision, tissue patterning, morphogenesis, and is hence regarded as a developmental pathway. However, if this pathway goes awry, it contributes to cellular transformation and tumorigenesis. There is mounting evidence that this pathway is dysregulated in a variety of malignancies, and can behave as either an oncogene or a tumor suppressor depending upon cell context. This chapter highlights the current evidence for aberration of the Notch signaling pathway in a wide range of tumors from hematological cancers, such as leukemia and lymphoma, through to lung, skin, breast, pancreas, colon, prostate, ovarian, brain, and liver tumors. It proposes that the Notch signaling pathway may represent novel target for cancer therapeutic intervention.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · Advances in pharmacology (San Diego, Calif.)
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    ABSTRACT: Bone marrow-derived endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) constitute an important endogenous system in the maintenance of endothelial integrity and vascular homeostasis. Cardiovascular risk factors are associated with a reduced number and functional capacity of EPCs. Here we investigated the effect of transplantation of bone marrow-derived cells from Dahl salt-resistant rat into age-matched Dahl salt-sensitive (DS) rat on blood pressure, endothelial function, and circulating EPC number. The recipient DS rats were fed a normal (0.5% NaCl, NS) or high-salt (4% NaCl, HS) diet for 6 weeks after bone marrow transplantation (BMT). DS rats on a NS or a HS diet without BMT were used as controls. Hypertensive DS (HS-DS) rat (systolic blood pressure: 213 ± 4 mm Hg vs. 152 ± 4 mm Hg in NS, P < .05) manifested impaired endothelium-dependent relaxation to acetylcholine (EDR), increased gene expression of vascular oxidative stress and proinflamamtory cytokines, and decreased eNOS expression. BMT on HS-DS rat significantly improved EDR and eNOS expression, reduced oxidative stress without reduction in SBP (206 ± 6 mm Hg). Flow cytometry analysis showed that there was no difference in the number of circulating EPCs, demonstrated by expression of EPC markers CD34, cKit, and vascular endothelial growth factor, between hypertensive and normotensive rats. Surprisingly, BMT resulted in a 5- to 10-fold increase in the previously mentioned EPC markers in hypertensive, but not normotensive rat. These results suggest that DS rat has an impaired ability to increase bone marrow-derived EPCs in response to HS diet challenge, which may contribute to endothelial dysfunction.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · Journal of the American Society of Hypertension (JASH)

  • No preview · Article · Jun 2012 · Cancer Research
  • Z. Liu · R. Tian · Y. Li · H. Shao · O.C. Velazquez

    No preview · Article · Feb 2012 · Journal of Surgical Research

  • No preview · Article · Jul 2011 · Cancer Research
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    ABSTRACT: The tumor microenvironment is emerging as an important target for cancer therapy. Fibroblasts (Fbs) within the tumor stroma are critically involved in promoting tumor growth and angiogenesis through secretion of soluble factors, synthesis of extracellular matrix and direct cell-cell interaction. In this work, we aim to alter the biological activity of stromal Fbs by modulating the Notch1 signaling pathway. We show that Fbs engineered to constitutively activate the Notch1 pathway significantly inhibit melanoma growth and tumor angiogenesis. We determine that the inhibitory effect of 'Notch-engineered' Fbs is mediated by increased secretion of Wnt-induced secreted protein-1 (WISP-1) as the effects of Notch1 activation in Fbs are reversed by shRNA-mediated blockade of WISP-1. When 'Notch-engineered' Fbs are co-grafted with melanoma cells in SCID mice, shRNA-mediated blockade of WISP-1 reverses the tumor-suppressive phenotype of the 'Notch-engineered' Fbs, significantly increases melanoma growth and tumor angiogenesis. Consistent with these findings, supplement of recombinant WISP-1 protein inhibits melanoma cell growth in vitro. In addition, WISP-1 is modestly expressed in melanoma-activated Fbs but highly expressed in inactivated Fbs. Evaluation of human melanoma skin biopsies indicates that expression of WISP-1 is significantly lower in melanoma nests and surrounding areas filled with infiltrated immune cells than in the adjacent dermis unaffected by the melanoma. Overall, our study shows that constitutive activation of the Notch1 pathway confers Fbs with a suppressive phenotype to melanoma growth, partially through WISP-1. Thus, targeting tumor stromal Fbs by activating Notch signaling and/or increasing WISP-1 may represent a novel therapeutic approach to combat melanoma.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2011 · Oncogene

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2011 · Cancer Research
  • Hongwei Shao · Long Cai · Yan Li · Omaida C. Velazquez · Z.-J. Liu

    No preview · Article · Jan 2011 · Cancer Research
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    ABSTRACT: The chemokine stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) plays a critical role in mobilizing precursor cells in the bone marrow and is essential for efficient vascular regeneration and repair. We recently reported that calcium augments the expression of chemokine receptor CXCR4 and enhances the angiogenic potential of bone marrow derived cells (BMCs). Neovascularization is impaired by aging therefore we suggested that aging may cause defects of CXCR4 expression and cellular responses to calcium. Indeed we found that both the basal and calcium-induced surface expression of CXCR4 on BMCs was significantly reduced in 25-month-old mice compared with 2-month-old mice. Reduced Ca-induced CXCR4 expression in BMC from aged mice was associated with defective calcium influx. Diminished CXCR4 surface expression in BMC from aged mice correlated with diminished neovascularization in an ischemic hindlimb model with less accumulation of CD34(+) progenitor cells in the ischemic muscle with or without local overexpression of SDF-1. Intravenous injection of BMCs from old mice homed less efficiently to ischemic muscle and stimulated significantly less neovascularization compared with the BMCs from young mice. Transplantation of old BMCs into young mice did not reconstitute CXCR4 functions suggesting that the defects were not reversible by changing the environment. We conclude that defects of basal and calcium-regulated functions of the CXCR4/SDF-1 axis in BMCs contribute significantly to the age-related loss of vasculogenic responses.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2010 · Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: We previously reported that stromal cell-derived factor-1α (SDF-1α, a homing signal for recruiting endothelial progenitor cells (EPC) to areas of neovascularization), is down-regulated in diabetic wounds (Gallagher et al, J Clin Invest. 2007;117:1249-1259). We now investigate signals whereby mature endothelial cells (EC) and circulating EPC achieve SDF-1α-mediated EPC homing. SDF-1α in diabetic wounds were therapeutically increased by injection of SDF-1α-engineered bone marrow-derived fibroblasts versus control cells (N = 48 [20, non-obese diabetic (NOD)], [28, streptozotocin-C57]). Polymerase chain reaction-array gene expression differences were validated by Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. The role of adhesion molecule(s) in mediating SDF-1α-induced EPC homing, and wound healing was furthered studied using antagonists in vitro and in vivo. Increasing wound SDF-1α via cell-based therapy promotes healing in diabetic mice (∼20% increase in healing rates by day 3, P = 0.006). SDF-1α increased EC-EPC adhesion and specifically upregulated E-selectin expression in human microvascular EC (2.3-fold increase, P < 0.01). This effect was also significant in blood vessels of the experimental mice and resulted in increased wound neovascularization. The regulatory effects of SDF-1α on EC-EPC adhesion and EPC homing were specifically mediated by E-selectin, as the application of E-selectin antagonists significantly inhibited SDF-1α-induced EC-EPC adhesion, EPC homing, wound neovascularization, and wound healing. SDF-1α-engineered cell-based therapy promotes diabetic wound healing in mice by specifically upregulating E-selectin expression in mature EC leading to increase EC-EPC adhesion, EPC homing, and increased wound neovascularization. These findings provide novel insight into the signals underlying the biological effect of SDF-1α on EPC homing and point to E-selectin as a new potential target for therapeutic manipulation of EPC trafficking in diabetic wound healing.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2010 · Annals of surgery
  • Z. Liu · R. Tian · H. Shao · Y. Zhuge · Y. Li · W. An · B. Habib · O. C. Velazquez

    No preview · Article · Feb 2010 · Journal of Surgical Research
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    ABSTRACT: The effects on angiogenesis of a novel CXC chemokine receptor 4 (CXCR4) antagonist, SDF-1betaP2G, derived from human stromal cell-derived factor-1beta (SDF-1beta), were examined in a model of hind limb ischaemia in mice. The antagonistic activities of SDF-1betaP2G against CXCR4 were evaluated in vitro and in vivo and compared with phosphate-buffered saline and AMD3100 (a small bicyclam antagonist of SDF-1). Angiogenesis, muscle regeneration and the expression of pro-angiogenic factors were evaluated in ischaemic gastrocnemius muscles. Distant toxic effects of SDF-1betaP2G were evaluated by inflammatory and apoptotic markers. SDF-1betaP2G induced CXCR4 internalization and competitively inhibited the chemotaxis of SDF-1beta but did not mediate migration, calcium influx, or the phosphorylation of Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinase in cultured T-lymphoblastic leukaemia cells or H9C2 cells. SDF-1betaP2G enhanced blood flow, angiogenesis, and muscle regeneration in ischaemic hind limbs, and the enhancement was significantly better than that of AMD3100. Markers of angiogenesis and progenitor cell migration, including phosphorylated Akt, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), SDF-1 and CXCR4, were up-regulated by SDF-1betaP2G and co-localized with CD31-positive cells. Neutralization of VEGF with its specific antibody abolished SDF-1betaP2G-induced blood reperfusion and angiogenesis. No apparent inflammatory and apoptotic effects were found in heart, liver, kidneys, and testes after SDF-1betaP2G administration. Our findings indicate that the novel CXCR4 antagonist, SDF-1betaP2G, can efficiently enhance ischaemic angiogenesis, blood flow restoration, and muscle regeneration without apparent adverse effects, most likely through a VEGF-dependent pathway.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2009 · Cardiovascular Research
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    ABSTRACT: Cell surface receptors play major roles in the mobilization and homing of progenitor cells from the bone marrow to peripheral tissues. CXCR4 is an important receptor that regulates homing of leucocytes and endothelial progenitors in response to the chemokine stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1). Ionic calcium is also known to regulate chemotaxis of selective bone marrow cells (BMCs) through the calcium-sensing receptor, CaR. Here we show that calcium regulates CXCR4 expression and BMC responses to SDF-1. CaCl(2) treatment of BMC induced a time- and dose-dependent increase in both the transcription and cell surface expression of CXCR4. BMC subpopulations expressing VEGFR2(+), CD34(+) and cKit(+)/Sca-1(+) were especially sensitive to calcium. The effects were blocked by calcium influx inhibitors, anti-CaR antibody and the protein synthesis inhibitor cycloheximide, but not by the CXCR4 antagonist AMD3100. Calcium treatment also enhanced SDF-1-mediated CXCR4 internalization. These changes were reflected in significantly improved chemotaxis by SDF-1, which was abolished by AMD3100 and by antibody against CXCR4. Calcium pre-treatment improved homing of CD34(+) BMCs to ischemic muscle in vivo, and enhanced revascularization in ischemic mouse hindlimbs. Our results identify calcium as a positive regulator of CXCR4 expression that promotes stem cell mobilization, homing and therapy.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2009 · Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: Angiogenesis requires the mobilization of progenitor cells from the bone marrow and homing of progenitor cells to ischemic tissue. Statins facilitate the former, and the chemokine stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) enhances the latter. Their combined influence on angiogenesis was studied in vivo in the ischemic hindlimb C57BL/6 mouse model. The ischemic to non-ischemic perfusion ratio increased from 0.29 +/- 0.02 immediately after femoral excision to 0.51 +/- 0.10 three weeks after the surgery in the mice treated with either fluvastatin or SDF-1 alone, which is significantly better than the control (0.38 +/- 0.05, p < .05, n = 6). The combined use of fluvastatin and SDF-1 further improved the reperfusion ratio (0.62 +/- 0.08, p < .05). More cell proliferation, less apoptosis, enhanced bone marrow-derived endothelial progenitor cell (EPC) incorporation and higher capillary density were observed in ischemic tissue treated with both statin and SDF-1. In vitro mono-treatment with either fluvastatin (100 nM) or SDF-1 (100 ng/ml) facilitated EPC proliferation and migration, inhibited EPC apoptosis, enhanced expression of matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) and -9 (MMP-9), and increased Akt phosphorylation and nitric oxide production. These effects were significantly augmented by the two agents together and ablated by inhibitors of either Akt or nitric oxide synthase (NOS). In conclusion, statin and SDF-1 additively enhance progenitor cell migration and proliferation and down-regulate EPC apoptosis, resulting in improved reperfusion via activation of the Akt/NOS pathway and up-regulation of MMP-2 and MMP-9 expression.
    Preview · Article · May 2008 · Stem Cells
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    Zhe Yang · Hongwei Shao · Yaohong Tan · Darwin Eton · Hong Yu
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    ABSTRACT: To examine the feasibility of using blood-derived smooth muscle cells (BD-SMCs) as a target for to deliver therapeutic proteins. Mononuclear cells (MNC) were isolated from peripheral blood. The outgrowth colonies from MNC culture were differentiated into BD-SMCs in media containing platelet-derived growth factor BB. Phenotypic characterization of BD-SMCs was assessed by immunocytochemistry. Cell proliferation, gene transfer efficiency with a retroviral vector, apoptosis, and the biological activity of the transduced gene product from the BD-SMCs were evaluated in vitro and in vivo in comparison with vascular derived SMC (VSMCs). BD-SMCs stained positive for SMC markers. No significant difference was observed between BD-SMCs and VSMCs in cell proliferation, migration, adhesiveness, and gene transfer efficiency. After BD-SMCs were transduced with a retroviral vector carrying the secreted alkaline phosphatase gene (SEAP), 174 +/- 50 mug biologically active SEAP was produced per 10(6) cells over 24 hours. After injecting 5 x 10(6) cells expressing SEAP intravenously into rabbits, SEAP concentration increased significantly in the circulation from 0.14 +/- 0.04 mug/ml to 2.34 +/- 0.16 mug/ml 3 days after cell injection (P < .01, n = 3). Circulating levels of SEAP decreased to 1.76 mug /ml 1 week later and remained at this level up to 8 weeks, then declined to pre-cell injection level at 12 weeks. VSMC in vivo gene expression data were equivalent. BD-SMCs have similar characteristics to mature VSMCs and can be used as a novel target for gene transfer to deliver a therapeutic protein.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2008 · Journal of Vascular Surgery
  • H. Yu · H. Shao · Y. Tan · D. Eton

    No preview · Article · Apr 2007 · Cardiovascular Revascularization Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) mobilizes bone marrow mononuclear cells into the peripheral circulation. Stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) enhances the homing of progenitor cells mobilized from the bone marrow and augments neovascularization in ischemic tissue. We hypothesize that SDF-1 will boost the pro-angiogenic effect of G-CSF. NIH 3T3 cells retrovirally transduced with SDF-1alpha gene (NIH 3T3/SDF-1) were used to deliver SDF-1 in vitro and in vivo. Endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) co-cultured with NIH 3T3/SDF-1 cells using cell culture inserts migrated faster and were less apoptotic compared to those not exposed to SDF-1. NIH 3T3/SDF-1 (10(6) cells) were injected into the ischemic muscles immediately after resection of the left femoral artery and vein of C57BL/6J mice. G-CSF (25 mug/kg/day) was injected intraperitioneally daily for 3 days after surgery. Blood perfusion was examined using a laser Doppler perfusion imaging system. The perfusion ratio of ischemic/non-ischemic limb increased to 0.57+/-0.03 and 0.50+/-0.06 with the treatment of either SDF-1 or G-CSF only, respectively, 3 weeks after surgery, which was significantly higher than the saline-injected control group (0.41+/-0.01, P<0.05). Combined treatment with both SDF-1 and G-CSF resulted in an even better perfusion ratio of 0.69+/-0.08 (P<0.05 versus the single treatment groups). Mice were sacrificed 21 days after surgery. Immunostaining and Western blot assay of the tissue lysates showed that the injected NIH 3T3/SDF-1 survived and expressed SDF-1. CD34(+) cells were detected with immunostaining, capillary density was assessed with alkaline phosphatase staining, and the apoptosis of muscle cells was viewed using an in situ cell death detection kit. More CD34(+) cells, increased capillary density, and less apoptotic muscle cells were found in both G-CSF and SDF-1 treated group (P<0.05 versus other groups). Combination of G-CSF-mediated progenitor cell mobilization and SDF-1-mediated homing of EPCs promotes neovascularization in the ischemic limb and increases the recovery of blood perfusion.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2007 · Cardiovascular Research
  • Hong Yu · Yaohong Tan · Hongwei Shao · Zhe Yang · Darwin Eton

    No preview · Article · Sep 2006 · Vascular Pharmacology

Publication Stats

257 Citations
98.62 Total Impact Points


  • 2008-2012
    • University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
      • • Vascular Biology Institute
      • • Department of Surgery
      Miami, Florida, United States
  • 2007-2012
    • University of Miami
      • • Department of Surgery
      • • Vascular Biology Institute
      Coral Gables, FL, United States