Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Heart Protein Regulates Blood Vessel Maintenance

Date:
May 14, 2009
Source:
Tufts University, Health Sciences
Summary:
Researchers have identified a protein that regulates the physical state of blood vessels. The biochemical processes involved in this regulation are important in the study of cardiovascular health.

In a study led by Akiko Hata, PhD, of Tufts University School of Medicine, researchers have shown that a protein expressed in the heart, FHL2, inhibits the genes necessary for the quiescence of vascular smooth muscle cells (vSMCs), which line blood vessels. Vascular smooth muscle cells undergo a process in diseases such as atherosclerosis or normal tissue damage caused by balloon angioplasty where they transition between a resting and proliferative state.

The ability to transition between the two states is necessary for the normal development of blood vessels, regulating blood pressure, and repairing vessels that suffer from injury.

“By understanding the pathways that modulate vSMCs, we are closer to being able to develop reagents to ameliorate abnormal function of blood vessels,” says Hata, associate professor at Tufts University School of Medicine and a member of the biochemistry program faculty at the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences at Tufts.
The researchers have previously shown that BMPs (Bone Morphogenetic Proteins) play a role in the maintenance of smooth muscle cells in the pulmonary artery. In this study, the research demonstrates that FHL2 (Four-and-a-Half LIM Domain Protein 2) inhibits activation of genes that are involved in contraction of smooth muscle cells by at least one of the BMPs.
“We also found that FHL2 is important in the regulation of vasomotor tone, or the contraction and relaxation of muscles in the blood vessel. This is important because dysfunction in vasomotor tone is thought to cause high blood pressure. Our study demonstrates that FHL2 is essential in modulating the physical state of vSMCs, which is essential in regulating vascular motor function,” says Hata.
First author Nicole Neuman is a graduate student in the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences at Tufts and is a member of the Molecular Signaling Laboratory at the Molecular Cardiology Research Institute (MCRI) at Tufts Medical Center.
Senior author Akiko Hata, PhD, is also the director of the Molecular Signaling Laboratory at the MCRI at Tufts Medical Center.
This study was funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute at the National Institutes of Health.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Tufts University, Health Sciences. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Neuman et al. The Four-and-a-half LIM Domain Protein 2 Regulates Vascular Smooth Muscle Phenotype and Vascular Tone. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2009; 284 (19): 13202 DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M900282200

Cite This Page:

Tufts University, Health Sciences. "Heart Protein Regulates Blood Vessel Maintenance." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 May 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090511122414.htm>.
Tufts University, Health Sciences. (2009, May 14). Heart Protein Regulates Blood Vessel Maintenance. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090511122414.htm
Tufts University, Health Sciences. "Heart Protein Regulates Blood Vessel Maintenance." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090511122414.htm (accessed April 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, April 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

AP (Apr. 21, 2014) Breakfast is now being served with a side of sticker shock. The cost of morning staples like bacon, coffee and orange juice is on the rise because of global supply problems. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins