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Article

VEGF Upregulates EGFR Expression to Stimulate Chemotactic Behaviors in the rMC-1 Model of Müller Glia

Department of Biomedical Engineering, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Brain Sci. 2020, 10(6), 330; https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci10060330
Received: 6 March 2020 / Revised: 28 March 2020 / Accepted: 27 May 2020 / Published: 29 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Neuroglia)
Progressive vision loss in adults has become increasingly prevalent worldwide due to retinopathies associated with aging, genetics, and epigenetic factors that damage the retinal microvasculature. Insufficient supply of oxygen and/or nutrients upregulates factors such as vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and epidermal growth factor (EGF), which can induce abnormal angiogenesis and damage the structural arrangement of the retinal blood barrier (BRB). Müller glia (MG) regulate the diffusion of essential compounds across the BRB and respond to retinal insults via reactive gliosis, which includes cell hypertrophy, migration, and/or proliferation near areas of elevated VEGF concentration. Increasing concentrations of exogenous VEGF, upregulated by retinal pigmented epithelium cells, and endogenous epidermal growth factor receptor (EGF-R) stimulation in MG, implicated in MG proliferative and migratory behavior, often lead to progressive and permanent vision loss. Our project examined the chemotactic responses of the rMC-1 cell line, a mammalian MG model, toward VEGF and EGF signaling fields in transwell assays, and within respective concentration gradient fields produced in the glia line (gLL) microfluidic system previously described by our group. rMC-1 receptor expression in defined ligand fields was also evaluated using quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) and immunocytochemical staining. Results illustrate dramatic increases in rMC-1 chemotactic responses towards EGF gradient fields after pre-treatment with VEGF. In addition, qPCR illustrated significant upregulation of EGF-R upon VEGF pre-treatment, which was higher than that induced by its cognate ligand, EGF. These results suggest interplay of molecular pathways between VEGF and EGF-R that have remained understudied in MG but are significant to the development of effective anti-VEGF treatments needed for a variety of retinopathies. View Full-Text
Keywords: Müller glia; microfluidics; VEGF; EGF-R; reactive gliosis; migration assays; blood retinal barrier Müller glia; microfluidics; VEGF; EGF-R; reactive gliosis; migration assays; blood retinal barrier
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MDPI and ACS Style

Peña, J.S.; Vazquez, M. VEGF Upregulates EGFR Expression to Stimulate Chemotactic Behaviors in the rMC-1 Model of Müller Glia. Brain Sci. 2020, 10, 330. https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci10060330

AMA Style

Peña JS, Vazquez M. VEGF Upregulates EGFR Expression to Stimulate Chemotactic Behaviors in the rMC-1 Model of Müller Glia. Brain Sciences. 2020; 10(6):330. https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci10060330

Chicago/Turabian Style

Peña, Juan S., and Maribel Vazquez. 2020. "VEGF Upregulates EGFR Expression to Stimulate Chemotactic Behaviors in the rMC-1 Model of Müller Glia" Brain Sciences 10, no. 6: 330. https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci10060330

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