Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a common disorder of progressive cognitive decline among elderly subjects. Angiogenesis-related factors including vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) might be involved in the pathogenesis of AD. Soluble form of the VEGF receptor is likely to be an intrinsic negative counterpart of VEGF. We measured the plasma levels of VEGF and its two soluble receptors (sVEGFR1 and sVEGFR2) in 120 control subjects, 75 patients with mild cognitive impairment, and 76 patients with AD using ELISA. Plasma levels of VEGF in patients with AD were higher than those in healthy control subjects. However, plasma levels of sVEGFR1 and sVEGFR2 were lower in patients with AD than in healthy control subjects. Levels of VEGFR2 mRNA were significantly decreased in human umbilical vein endothelial cells after amyloid-beta treatment. Further, protein levels of VEGFR2 were also decreased in the brains of AD model mice. In addition, we show that the expression of sVEGFR2 and VEGFR2 was also decreased by the transfection with the Notch intracellular domain. These results indicate that the alterations of VEGF and its two receptors levels might be associated with those at risk for Alzheimer's disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas