Abstract by Andrew Jensen
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Analyzing Capillary Morphogenesis Gene protein 2 using Microfluidics
Angiogenesis is the process of new blood vessel formation, an essential pathway utilized for tumor progression and some eye diseases. A key part of angiogenesis occurs as endothelial cells respond to growth factors signals and migrate toward the growth factor gradient (chemotaxis). We have recently shown that Capillary Morphogenesis Gene protein 2 (CMG2) mediates this pathway. To monitor this phenomenon in vitro we form a gradient of growth factors using a microfluidic device. Endothelial cells within this gradient migrate toward the growth factors, comparable to in vivo chemotaxis. Here we report progress identifying the signaling pathway affected by CMG2 using antagonists and other inhibitors. We observed that a common RhoA inhibitor, C3 exoexoenzyme, produces the same migration phenotype as CMG2-/- cells. Similarly, we observe that cells migrate toward another chemoattractant, sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P), that can bypass RhoA signaling even in the presence of CMG2 antagonists. These data suggest that targeting CMG2 may be a useful target for blocking pathological angiogenesis.