Docking Protein Gab1 Is an Essential Component of Postnatal Angiogenesis After Ischemia via HGF/c-Met Signaling
Rationale: Grb2-associated binder (Gab) docking proteins, consisting of Gab1, Gab2, and Gab3, have crucial roles in growth factor–dependent signaling. Various proangiogenic growth factors regulate angiogenesis and endothelial function. However, the roles of Gab proteins in angiogenesis remain elusive.
Objective: To elucidate the role of Gab proteins in postnatal angiogenesis.
Methods and Results: Endothelium-specific Gab1 knockout (Gab1ECKO) mice were viable and showed no obvious defects in vascular development. Therefore, we analyzed a hindlimb ischemia (HLI) model of control, Gab1ECKO, or conventional Gab2 knockout (Gab2KO) mice. Intriguingly, impaired blood flow recovery and necrosis in the operated limb was observed in all of Gab1ECKO, but not in control or Gab2KO mice. Among several proangiogenic growth factors, hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) induced the most prominent tyrosine phosphorylation of Gab1 and subsequent complex formation of Gab1 with SHP2 (Src homology-2–containing protein tyrosine phosphatase 2) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase subunit p85 in human endothelial cells (ECs). Gab1-SHP2 complex was required for HGF-induced migration and proliferation of ECs via extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2 pathway and for HGF-induced stabilization of ECs via ERK5. In contrast, Gab1-p85 complex regulated activation of AKT and contributed partially to migration of ECs after HGF stimulation. Microarray analysis demonstrated that HGF upregulated angiogenesis-related genes such as KLF2 (Krüppel-like factor 2) and Egr1 (early growth response 1) via Gab1-SHP2 complex in human ECs. In Gab1ECKO mice, gene transfer of vascular endothelial growth factor, but not HGF, improved blood flow recovery and ameliorated limb necrosis after HLI.
Conclusion: Gab1 is essential for postnatal angiogenesis after ischemia via HGF/c-Met signaling.
- Received September 8, 2010.
- Revision received January 20, 2011.
- Accepted January 24, 2011.
- © 2011 American Heart Association, Inc.