PDGF-C induces maturation of blood vessels in a model of glioblastoma and attenuates the response to anti-VEGF treatment

Emmanuelle di Tomaso, Nyall London, Daniel Fuja, James Logie, James A. Tyrrell, Walid Kamoun, Lance L. Munn, Rakesh K. Jain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Recent clinical trials of VEGF inhibitors have shown promise in the treatment of recurrent glioblastomas (GBM). However, the survival benefit is usually short-lived as tumors escape anti-VEGF therapies. Here we tested the hypothesis that Platelet Derived Growth Factor-C (PDGF-C), an isoform of the PDGF family, affects GBM progression independent of VEGF pathway and hinders anti-VEGF therapy. Principal Findings: We first showed that PDGF-C is present in human GBMs. Then, we overexpressed or downregulated PDGF-C in a human GBM cell line, U87MG, and grew them in cranial windows in nude mice to assess vessel structure and function using intravital microscopy. PDGF-C overexpressing tumors had smaller vessel diameters and lower vascular permeability compared to the parental or siRNA-transfected tumors. Furthermore, vessels in PDGF-C overexpressing tumors had more extensive coverage with NG2 positive perivascular cells and a thicker collagen IV basement membrane than the controls. Treatment with DC101, an anti-VEGFR-2 antibody, induced decreases in vessel density in the parental tumors, but had no effect on the PDGF-C overexpressing tumors. Conclusion: These results suggest that PDGF-C plays an important role in glioma vessel maturation and stabilization, and that it can attenuate the response to anti-VEGF therapy, potentially contributing to escape from vascular normalization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere5123
JournalPloS one
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 8 2009
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General

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