Defining an Upstream VEGF (Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor) Priming Signature for Downstream Factor-Induced Endothelial Cell-Pericyte Tube Network Coassembly
ARTERIOSCLEROSIS THROMBOSIS AND VASCULAR BIOLOGY
Authors: Bowers, Stephanie L. K.; Kemp, Scott S.; Aguera, Kalia N.; Koller, Gretchen M.; Forgy, Joshua C.; Davis, George E.
Objective: In this work, we have sought to define growth factor requirements and the signaling basis for different stages of human vascular morphogenesis and maturation. Approach and Results: Using a serum-free model of endothelial cell (EC) tube morphogenesis in 3-dimensional collagen matrices that depends on a 5 growth factor combination, SCF (stem cell factor), IL (interleukin)-3, SDF (stromal-derived factor)-1 alpha, FGF (fibroblast growth factor)-2, and insulin (factors), we demonstrate that VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) pretreatment of ECs for 8 hours (ie, VEGF priming) leads to marked increases in the EC response to the factors which includes; EC tip cells, EC tubulogenesis, pericyte recruitment and proliferation, and basement membrane deposition. VEGF priming requires VEGFR2, and the effect of VEGFR2 is selective to the priming response and does not affect factor-dependent tubulogenesis in the absence of priming. Key molecule and signaling requirements for VEGF priming include RhoA, Rock1 (Rho-kinase), PKC alpha (protein kinase C alpha), and PKD2 (protein kinase D2). siRNA suppression or pharmacological blockade of these molecules and signaling pathways interfere with the ability of VEGF to act as an upstream primer of downstream factor-dependent EC tube formation as well as pericyte recruitment. VEGF priming was also associated with the formation of actin stress fibers, activation of focal adhesion components, upregulation of the EC factor receptors, c-Kit, IL-3R alpha, and CXCR4 (C-X-C chemokine receptor type 4), and upregulation of EC-derived PDGF (platelet-derived growth factor)-BB, PDGF-DD, and HB-EGF (heparin-binding epidermal growth factor) which collectively affect pericyte recruitment and proliferation. Conclusions: Overall, this study defines a signaling signature for a separable upstream VEGF priming step, which can activate ECs to respond to downstream factors that are necessary to form branching tube networks with associated mural cells.
Diagnostic Approach for Arboviral Infections in the United States
JOURNAL OF CLINICAL MICROBIOLOGY
Authors: Piantadosi, Anne; Kanjilal, Sanjat
Domestic arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) are single-stranded RNA viruses, the most common of which include the mosquito-borne West Nile virus, St. Louis encephalitis virus, La Crosse virus, Jamestown Canyon virus, and eastern equine encephalitis virus, as well as the tick-borne Powassan virus. Previously con sidered rare infections, they have been detected with increasing frequency over the past 2 decades. Here, we present an overview of the domestic arboviruses listed above and describe the modalities employed to diagnose infection. Global arboviruses, including dengue virus, Zika virus, and chikungunya virus, have also been increasingly detected in the United States within the last 5 years but are not a focus of this minireview. Typical manifestations of arbovirus infection range from no symptoms, to meningitis or encephalitis, to death. Serologies are the standard means of diagnosis in the laboratory, since most viruses have a short period of replication, limiting the utility of molecular tests. The interpretation of serologies is confounded by antibody cross-reactivity with viruses belonging to the same serogroup and by long-lasting antibodies from prior infections. Next-generation assays have improved performance by increasing antigen purity, selecting optimal epitopes, and improving interpretive algorithms, but challenges remain. Due to cross-reactivity, a positive first-line serology test requires confirmation by either a plaque reduction neutralization test or detection of seroconversion or a 4-fold rise in virus-specific IgM or IgG antibody titers from acuteand convalescent-phase sera. The use of molecular diagnostics, such as reverse transcription PCR or unbiased metagenomic sequencing, is limited to the minority of patients who present with ongoing viremia or central nervous system replication. With the continued expansion of vector range, the diagnosis of domestic arboviruses will become an increasingly important task for generalists and specialists alike.