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Activation of AP-1 transcription factors differentiates FGF2 and vascular endothelial growth factor regulation of endothelial nitric-oxide synthase expression in placental artery endothelial cells

, : Activation of AP-1 transcription factors differentiates FGF2 and vascular endothelial growth factor regulation of endothelial nitric-oxide synthase expression in placental artery endothelial cells. Journal of Biological Chemistry 285(23): 17348-17358

FGF2 (fibroblast growth factor 2), but not vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), stimulates sustained activation of ERK2/1 for endothelial NOS3 (nitric-oxide synthase 3) protein expression in ovine fetoplacental artery endothelial cells (oFPAEC). We deciphered herein the downstream signaling of ERK2/1 responsible for NOS3 expression by FGF2 in oFPAEC. FGF2, but not VEGF, increased NOS3 mRNA levels without altering its degradation. FGF2, but not VEGF, trans-activated sheep NOS3 promoter, and this was dependent on ERK2/1 activation. FGF2 did not trans-activate NOS3 promoters with deletions upstream of the consensus AP-1 site (TGAGTC A, -678 to -685). Trans-activation of wild-type NOS3 promoter by FGF2 was significantly inhibited when either the AP-1 or the cAMP-response element (CRE)-like sequence (TGCGTCA, -752 to -758) was mutated and was completely blocked when both were mutated. EMSA analyses showed that FGF2, but not VEGF, stimulated AP-1 and CRE DNA-protein complexes primarily composed of JunB and Fra1. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays confirmed JunB/Fra1 binding to NOS3 promoter AP-1 and CRE elements in intact cells. FGF2, but not VEGF, stimulated JunB and Fra1 expressions; all preceded NOS3 up-regulation and were inhibited by PD98059. Down-regulation of JunB or Fra-1, but not c-Jun, blocked FGF2 stimulation of NOS3 expression and NO production. AP-1 inhibition suppressed FGF2 stimulation of NOS3 expression in human umbilical vein EC and uterine artery endothelial cells. Thus, FGF2 induction of NOS3 expression is mainly mediated by AP-1-dependent transcription involving JunB and Fra1 up-regulation via sustained ERK2/1 activation in endothelial cells.


PMID: 20371606

DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M109.092791

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