VEGF-D deficiency in mice does not affect embryonic or postnatal lymphangiogenesis but reduces lymphatic metastasis.
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in Journal of Pathology (The) (2009), 219(3), 356-364
Vascular endothelial growth factor-D (VEGF-D) is one of the two ligands of the VEGFR-3 receptor on lymphatic endothelial cells. Gene-silencing studies in mice and Xenopus tadpoles recently showed that the ... [more ▼]
Vascular endothelial growth factor-D (VEGF-D) is one of the two ligands of the VEGFR-3 receptor on lymphatic endothelial cells. Gene-silencing studies in mice and Xenopus tadpoles recently showed that the role of endogenous VEGF-D in lymphatic development is moderate. By contrast, exogenous VEGF-D is capable of stimulating lymphangiogenesis. Nonetheless, its endogenous role in pathological conditions remains largely unknown. Hence, we reassessed its role in disease, using Vegf-dnull mice. Vegf-dnull mice were generated that, under physiological conditions, displayed normal embryonic and postnatal lymphangiogenesis and lymphatic remodelling, efficient lymphatic functioning and normal health. Vegf-dnull mice also reponded normally in models of skin wound healing and healing of infarcted myocardium, despite enhanced expression of VEGF-D in these models in wild-type mice. In contrast, Vegf-dnull mice displayed reduced peritumoral lymphangiogenesis and lymph node metastasis in an orthotopic pancreatic tumour model. Together, our data indicate that endogenous VEGF-D in mice is dispensible for lymphangiogenesis during development, in postnatal and adult physiology and in several pathological conditions, but significantly contributes to lymphatic metastasis. [less ▲]Detailed reference viewed: 77 (5 ULg)