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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Extracellular matrix glycoprotein biglycan enhances vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration.

Proteoglycans are produced and secreted by vascular smooth muscle cells, but the pathophysiological role of these glycoproteins in the vasculature is an enigma. Because the small leucine-rich proteoglycan (SLRP) biglycan is overexpressed in arteriosclerotic lesions, we produced mice constitutively overexpressing biglycan in the vascular smooth muscle, in order to examine the effects on vascular pathology. In the aorta and renal vasculature, increased vascular proliferation was seen both in the basal state and after infusion of angiotensin II (Ang II) in the transgenic mice compared with wild-type controls. In addition, the combination of biglycan overexpression and Ang II infusion resulted in marked increases in vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration in the coronary arteries, as well as increases in fibrosis surrounding the vessels. In vitro, biglycan caused an increase in thymidine incorporation and migration of vascular smooth muscle cells, whereas these parameters were unchanged or reduced in endothelial cells. Moreover, addition of biglycan resulted in an increase in cdk2 expression and decrease in p27 levels in the vascular smooth muscle cells. These results suggest that this extracellular matrix SLRP may be involved in the regulation of vascular smooth muscle growth and migration through cdk2- and p27-dependent pathways. Furthermore, changes in biglycan expression could be a factor influencing the susceptibility of arteries to vascular injury, and may play a direct role in the pathogenesis of vascular lesions.[1]


  1. Extracellular matrix glycoprotein biglycan enhances vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration. Shimizu-Hirota, R., Sasamura, H., Kuroda, M., Kobayashi, E., Hayashi, M., Saruta, T. Circ. Res. (2004) [Pubmed]
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