Induction of vascular endothelial growth factor in human astrocytes by lead: Involvement of a protein kinase c/activator protein-1 complex-dependent and hypoxia-inducible factor 1-independent signaling pathway

Mir Ahamed Hossain, Christopher M.L. Bouton, Jonathan Pevsner, John Laterra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The mechanism(s) underlying lead neurotoxicity are not fully elucidated, cDNA expression microarray analysis identified lead-sensitive genes in immortalized human fetal astrocytes (SV-FHA). Of the represented genes expressed, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) was one of the most sensitive. Lead induced VEGF mRNA 3-fold and VEGF protein ≃2-fold with maximum mRNA induction following incubation with 10 μM lead acetate for 24 h. Phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), a potent protein kinase C (PKC) activator, increased VEGF mRNA 2-fold and PKC inhibition by GF-109208 completely blocked VEGF induction by lead. Expression of dominant-negative PKC-ε, but not PKC-α, completely inhibited VEGF mRNA induction by lead. Lead activated the transcription factor AP-1 and increased AP-1-dependent luciferase expression >2-fold. Transfection of cells with a c-jun dominant-negative effectively inhibited both AP-1 activation and VEGF mRNA induction by lead. Hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) activity in SV-FHAs was moderately increased by lead (86%) and PMA (96%). Pretreatment with GF-109208 completely inhibited these effects of lead and PMA. However, lead did not alter HIF-1-dependent luciferase expression and a HIF-1α dominant-negative had no effects on the induction of VEGF mRNA by lead. These findings indicate that lead induces VEGF expression in SV-FHAs via a PKC/AP-1-dependent and HIF-1-independent signaling pathway.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27874-27882
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume275
Issue number36
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 8 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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