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

Contrasting effects of plasminogen activators, urokinase receptor, and LDL receptor-related protein on smooth muscle cell migration and invasion.

Smooth muscle cell (SMC) migration is an early response to vascular injury and contributes to the development of intimal thickening. Upregulation of several components of the plasminogen activator (PA) system has been documented after vascular injury. Utilizing a Transwell filter assay system and human umbilical vein SMCs, we sought to define the role of four different PA system components on SMC migration and matrix invasion: (1) PAs, (2) plasmin, (3) PA receptors, and (4) PA clearance receptors (ie, low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein [LRP]). Addition of active two-chain urokinase-type PA (UPA) stimulated random migration (192 +/- 30% of control, 0.36 nmol/L, P < .001). The stimulation was inhibited by pretreatment with diisopropylfluorophosphate, PA inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1), or aprotinin, a plasmin inhibitor. Augmented migration was also observed with either low-molecular-weight UPA or the amino terminal fragment of UPA (ATF), with the effects being additive. Stimulation by ATF alone, however, was not inhibited by aprotinin. The stimulatory effect was not specific for UPA, in that tissue-type PA (TPA) also increased migration (169 +/- 9% of control, 10 nmol/L, P < .001); the augmentation was inhibited by pretreatment with DFP, PAI-1, or aprotinin and was additive to the UPA effect. Antibodies to the UPA receptor but not 5'-nucleotidase (another glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored cell surface protein) inhibited baseline and UPA-stimulated migration. Similarly, both UPA and TPA stimulated invasion of a collagen gel; this augmentation was inhibited by aprotinin, whereas antibodies to the UPA receptor reduced baseline invasion. Finally, we tested whether inhibition of LRP function, which mediates internalization of PA/inhibitor complexes, affected either process. Both antibodies to LRP and recombinant receptor associated protein, a known inhibitor of ligand binding to the LRP, significantly inhibited migration but did not affect collagen gel invasion. These data demonstrate the ability of several components of the PA system to modulate SMC migration and invasion in vitro via plasmin-dependent and -independent mechanisms.[1]


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