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Phosphorylation and disorganization of vascular-endothelial cadherin in interaction between breast cancer and vascular endothelial cells.

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Adherens junctions of the endothelium play a key role in the maintenance of endothelial permeability and are composed of the vascular endothelial (VE)-cadherin/catenin adhesion complex. We report that following tumour cell (MDA MB231 cells) adherence to the HUVECs, there was a rapid (within 5 min) redistribution of VE-cadherin, resulting in its transient loss from regions of endothelial cell-cell contact. The molecule gradually reorganised within the endothelial cell contacts after this time. It was further shown that the overall expression of VE-cadherin did not change, however, the amount of alpha- and beta-catenins coprecipitated with VE-cadherin markedly decreased after 5 min of tumour cell adhesion to the HUVECs. Immunoprobing of these samples with anti-phosphotyrosine antibodies demonstrated that the tyrosine phosphorylation of VE-cadherin was significantly increased following 5 min of tumour cell adhesion. Together, these results suggest that the adhesion of tumour cells to HUVEC promotes the redistribution of VE-cadherin from interendothelial adherens junctions, an effect that may be attributed to the increase in tyrosine phosphorylation of members of the VE-cadherin/catenin adhesion complex. This, in turn, may increase vascular endothelial permeability and facilitate the transendothelial migration of tumour cells during extravasation.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Metastasis Research Group, University Department of Surgery, University of Wales College of Medicine, Cardiff CF4 4XN, UK.

Publication date: August 1, 1999

More about this publication?
  • The International Journal of Molecular Medicine is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of high quality studies related to the molecular mechanisms of human disease. The journal welcomes research on all aspects of molecular and clinical research, ranging from biochemistry to immunology, pathology, genetics, human genomics, microbiology, molecular pathogenesis, molecular cardiology, molecular surgery and molecular psychology.

    The International Journal of Molecular Medicine aims to provide an insight for researchers within the community in regard to developing molecular tools and identifying molecular targets for the diagnosis and treatment of a diverse number of human diseases.
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