Enhanced bronchial expression of vascular endothelial growth factor and receptors (Flk-1 and Flt-1) in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Kranenburg, A. R.; de Boer, W. I.; Alagappan, V. K. T.; Sterk, P. J.; Sharma, H. S.
February 2005
Thorax;Feb2005, Vol. 60 Issue 2, p106
Academic Journal
Background: Ongoing inflammatory, processes resulting in airway and vascular remodelling characterise chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and its receptors VEGFR-1 (Fit-1) and VEGFR-2 (KDR/FIk-1) could play a rote in tissue remodelling and angiogenesis in CORD. Methods: The cellular expression pattern of VEGF, Fit- 1, and KDR/Flk- 1 was examined by immunohistochemistry in central and peripheral lung tissues obtained from ex-smokers with COPD (forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEY1) <75% predicted; n =14) or without COPD (FEY1 >85% predicted; n = 14). The immunohistochemical staining of each molecule was quantified using a visual scoring method with grades ranging from 0 (no) to 3 (intense). Results: VEGF, Fit-i, and KDR/Fik-1 immunostaining was localised in vascular and airway smooth muscle (YSM and ASM) cells, bronchial, bronchiolar and alveolar epithelium, and macrophages. Pulmonary endothelial cells expressed FIt- 1 and KDR/Flk- 1 abundantly but not WOE Bronchial VEOF expression was higher in microvascular YSM cells and ASM cells of patients with CORD than in patients without CORD (1.7 and 1 .6-fold, p<0.01, respectively). YEGF expression in intimal and medial VSM (1.7 and 1 .3-fold, p <0.05) of peripheral pulmonary arteries associated with the bronchiolar airways was more intense in CORD, as was VEGF expression in the small pulmonary vessels in the alveolar region(i .5 and 1 .7-fold, p


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