COSMC is overexpressed in proliferating infantile hemangioma and enhances endothelial cell growth via VEGFR2

Authors:
Lee J Jr, Chen CH, Chen YH, Huang MJ, Huang J, Hung JS, Chen MT, Huang MC
In:
Source: PLoS ONE
Publication Date: (2013)
Issue: 8(2): e56211
Research Area:
Basic Research
Cells used in publication:
Endothelial, umbilical vein, human (HUVEC)
Species: human
Tissue Origin: vein
Platform:
Nucleofector™ I/II/2b
Abstract
Infantile hemangiomas are localized lesions comprised primarily of aberrant endothelial cells. COSMC plays a crucial role in blood vessel formation and is characterized as a molecular chaperone of T-synthase which catalyzes the synthesis of T antigen (GalĂź1,3GalNAc). T antigen expression is associated with tumor malignancy in many cancers. However, roles of COSMC in infantile hemangioma are still unclear. In this study, immunohistochemistry showed that COSMC was upregulated in proliferating hemangiomas compared with involuted hemangiomas. Higher levels of T antigen expression were also observed in the proliferating hemangioma. Overexpression of COSMC significantly enhanced cell growth and phosphorylation of AKT and ERK in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Conversely, knockdown of COSMC with siRNA inhibited endothelial cell growth. Mechanistic investigation showed that O-glycans were present on VEGFR2 and these structures were modulated by COSMC. Furthermore, VEGFR2 degradation was delayed by COSMC overexpression and facilitated by COSMC knockdown. We also showed that COSMC was able to regulate VEGF-triggered phosphorylation of VEGFR2. Our results suggest that COSMC is a novel regulator for VEGFR2 signaling in endothelial cells and dysregulation of COSMC expression may contribute to the pathogenesis of hemangioma.