Research Papers:

VEGF stimulated the angiogenesis by promoting the mitochondrial functions

Dongqing Guo, Qiyan Wang, Chun Li, Yong Wang and Xing Chen _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:77020-77027. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.20331

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Dongqing Guo1, Qiyan Wang1, Chun Li2, Yong Wang1 and Xing Chen3

1School of Life Sciences, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing, 100029, China

2Modern Research Center for Traditional Chinese Medicine, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing, 100029, China

3School of Information and Control Engineering, China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou, 221116, China

Correspondence to:

Xing Chen, email: [email protected]

Yong Wang, email: [email protected]

Keywords: VEGF, angiogenesis, mitochondria

Received: April 18, 2017     Accepted: June 29, 2017     Published: August 18, 2017


The vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) signaling pathway involved in angiogenesis which plays a pivotal role in normal development and also represents a major therapeutic target for tumors and intraocular neovascular disorders. The aims of the present study were to evaluate the effects of VEGF on endothelial cells and clarify the mechanism. Here, we showed that VEGF significantly stimulated the proliferation, migration and cell cycle of endothelial cells, and it also induced tube formation in vitro significantly. What’s more, the mitochondrial functions were enhanced in response to VEGF, including mitochondrial oxidative respiration and intracellular ATP levels. The reactive oxygen species (ROS) production decreased, while the enzymes of ROS defence system, including catalase and glutathione peroxidase (GPX1), whose expression both increased in the VEGF stimulation. VEGF activated mammalian target of rapamycinm (mTOR) signaling pathway to promote the function of mitochondria. Rapamycin, the inhibitor of mTOR pathway could inhibit the proliferation and cell cycle induced by VEGF. In summary, our study identified that VEGF promoted the angiogenesis and provided evidence for mitochondria as new therapeutic target of VEGF signaling in the angiogenic vascular disorders.

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