Apelin induces vascular smooth muscle cells migration via a PI3K/Akt/FoxO3a/MMP-2 pathway.

Apelin is an adipokine that has a critical role in the development of atherosclerosis, which may offer potential for therapy. Because migration of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) is a key event in the development of atherosclerosis, understanding its effect on the atherosclerotic vasculature is needed. Here we investigated the effect of apelin on VSMC migration and the possible signaling mechanism. In cultured rat VSMCs, apelin dose- and time-dependently promoted VSMC migration. Apelin increased the phosphorylation of Akt, whereas LY294002, an inhibitor of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K), and an Akt1/2 kinase inhibitor blocked the apelin-induced VSMC migration. Apelin dose-dependently induced phosphorylation of Forkhead box O3a (FoxO3a) and promoted its translocation from the nucleus to cytoplasm, which were blocked by LY294002 and Akt1/2 kinase inhibitor. Furthermore, apelin increased matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2) expression and gelatinolytic activity. Overexpression of a constitutively active, phosphorylation-resistant mutant, TM-FoxO3a, in VSMCs abrogated the effect of apelin on MMP-2 expression and VSMC migration. ARP101, an inhibitor of MMP-2, suppressed apelin-induced VSMC migration. Moreover, the levels of apelin, phosphorylated Akt, FoxO3a, and MMP-2 were higher in human carotid-artery atherosclerotic plaque than in adjacent normal vessels. We demonstrate that PI3K/Akt/FoxO3a signaling may be involved in apelin inducing VSMC migration. Phosphorylation of FoxO3a plays a central role in mediating the apelin-induced MMP-2 activation and VSMC migration.
AuthorsCheng Wang, Jianyan Wen, Yun Zhou, Li Li, Xiaobing Cui, Jinyu Wang, Lin Pan, Zhidong Ye, Peng Liu, Liling Wu
JournalThe international journal of biochemistry & cell biology (Int J Biochem Cell Biol) Vol. 69 Pg. 173-82 (Dec 2015) ISSN: 1878-5875 [Electronic] Netherlands
PMID26494002 (Publication Type: Journal Article)
CopyrightCopyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

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