Human lactoferrin upregulates expression of KDR/Flk-1 and stimulates VEGF-A-mediated endothelial cell proliferation and migration

Chan Woo Kim, Kyung N. Son, Sang-Yun Choi, Jiyoung Kim

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34 Citations (Scopus)


Lactoferrin (LF) is a multifunctional iron-binding glycoprotein, which plays a variety of biological processes including immunity. In this study, we demonstrate that human LF upregulates KDR/Flk-1 mRNA and protein levels in HUVECs at an optimal concentration of 5 μg/ml, which subsequently promotes the VEGF-induced proliferation and migration of the endothelial cells. Exposure of HUVECs to LF significantly increased VEGF-induced ERK MAP kinase phosphorylation. The maximal stimulation of KDR/Flk-1 expression by LF was correlated with LF-induced increase in cell proliferation and migration. These findings suggest that LF may stimulate in vivo angiogenesis via upregulation of KDR/Flk-1 expression in endothelial cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4332-4336
Number of pages5
JournalFEBS Letters
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Aug 7



  • KDR/Flk-1
  • Lactoferrin
  • Migration
  • Proliferation
  • VEGF

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Molecular Biology

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