Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and angiopoietin-1 (Ang1) are essential for vascular development, but this dependency has been assumed not to persist into adult life. In this study, we report that after 10 days of systemic treatment of 4-, 8-, and 16-week-old mice with VEGF-Trap, an inhibitor of VEGF, the number of capillaries in the tracheal mucosa was reduced by 39%, 28%, and 14%, respectively. The magnitude of the reduction decreased with age (r2=0.6, P<0.001), but was still significant at 16 weeks. A corresponding age-related decrease in vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2 (VEGFR-2) immunoreactivity suggests that diminished VEGFR-2 expression may contribute to resistance to VEGF signaling inhibition. VEGF-Trap further reduced VEGFR-2 expression in tracheal capillaries. By comparison, systemic treatment with adenovirus encoding Ang1 led to a significant enlargement of tracheal venules with little age effect (64%, 56%, and 49% increase in diameter at 10 days). When Ang1 was given in combination with VEGF-Trap, tracheal vessels presented the typical response to each factor, showing that the Angl effect was not VEGF-mediated, yet Ang1 seems to have a protective effect, as judged by prevention of VEGF-Trap-induced reduction in tracheal capillaries in the oldest group. Together, these findings indicate that VEGF and Ang1 participate in blood vessel survival and plasticity in adult life.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|State||Published - Apr 16 2004|
- Vascular endothelial growth factor
- Vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine