Nox4 mediates the expression of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 via p38 MAPK pathway in cultured human endothelial cells

Amandine Jaulmes, Patricia Sansilvestri-Morel, Gaëlle Rolland-Valognes, Fabienne Bernhardt, Roger Gaertner, Brian P Lockhart, Alex Cordi, Michel Wierzbicki, Alain Rupin, Tony J Verbeuren
Thrombosis Research 2009, 124 (4): 439-46

INTRODUCTION: Plasminogen Activator Inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) is the most potent endogenous inhibitor of fibrinolysis which is implicated in the pathogenesis of myocardial infarction and metabolic syndrome. The formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) plays an important role in the pathology of vascular disorders and has been shown to increase PAI-1 expression by endothelial cells. Growing evidence indicates that NADPH oxidase and in particular the constitutively active Nox4-p22(phox) complexes are major sources of ROS in endothelial cells. The aim of the present study was to characterize the role of NADPH oxidase and in particular Nox4 in the regulation of PAI-1 expression in cultured Human Umbilical Venous Endothelial Cells (HUVECs).

METHODS AND RESULTS: N-acetylcysteine (NAC, scavenger of ROS), diphenylene iodonium chloride (DPI, inhibitor of flavoproteins), M40403 (superoxyde dismutase mimic) and S17834 (inhibitor of NADPH oxidase) inhibited PAI-1 release and promoter activity in HUVECs. Specific knock down of Nox4 mRNA by siRNA caused a decrease in ROS production and NADPH oxidase activity. Moreover, Nox4 silencing decreased PAI-1 expression, release and activity as well as p38 MAPK pathways and NFkappaB activation. These signalling pathways are also involved in PAI-1 release.

CONCLUSIONS: The NADPH oxidase inhibitors DPI and S 17834 as well as Nox4 silencing decreased PAI-1 synthesis in human cultured endothelial cells demonstrating the involvement of the constitutively active Nox4-containing NADPH oxidase in ROS-mediated PAI-1 transcription via p38 MAPK pathways. NADPH oxidase targeting with inhibitors such as S17834 could be an interesting strategy to decrease both oxidative stress and PAI-1 synthesis.

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