Objective: To investigate the mechanism of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-induced endothelin-1 production in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Methods: Endothelin-1 levels were measured in conditioned medium of women with preeclampsia HUVECs were treated with different concentrations of VEGF165 and at various time intervals. Next, we measured endothelin-1 levels after HUVECs were also incubated with VEGF and endothelin-converting enzyme-1 (ECE-1) inhibitor or tissue inhibitors of matrix metalloproteinase-2 (TIMP-2). Additionally, the circulating levels of total and free VEGF, matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2), and endothelin-1 were measured in 20 preeclamptic patients and 20 healthy pregnant controls. Results: HUVECs treated with VEGF increased their endothelin-1 production in a concentration and time-dependent manner. The production of endothelin-1 was inhibited by TIMP-2, but not by the ECE-1 inhibitor. Total VEGF, MMP-2, and endothelin-1 concentrations were higher in preeclampsia and showed significant positive correlations between them. Conclusion: These findings suggest that VEGF-induced endothelin-1 production might be mediated by MMP-2 rather than by ECE-1 upregulation.
- Endothelin-converting enzyme-1
- Matrix metalloproteinase-2
- Vascular endothelial growth factor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Obstetrics and Gynaecology