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The Journal of Biological Chemistry
Year: 2008  |  Volume: 283  |  Issue: 39  |  Page No.: 26577 - 26590

NFATc1 Targets Cyclin A in the Regulation of Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell Multiplication during Restenosis

Manjula Karpurapu, Dong Wang, Nikhlesh K. Singh, Quanyi Li and Gadiparthi N. Rao    

Abstract: Platelet-derived growth factor BB (PDGF-BB) induced cyclin A expression and CDK2 activity in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC). Inhibition of nuclear factors of activated T cell (NFAT) activation by cyclosporin A (CsA) and VIVIT suppressed PDGF-BB-induced cyclin A expression and CDK2 activity, resulting in blockade of VSMC in the G1 phase. In addition, CsA- and VIVIT-mediated inhibition of NFATs and small interfering RNA-targeted down-regulation of cyclin A levels suppressed PDGF-BB-induced VSMC DNA synthesis. PDGF-BB also induced cyclin A mRNA levels in VSMC in an NFAT-dependent manner. Cloning and bioinformatic analysis of rat cyclin A promoter revealed the presence of NFAT-binding elements, and PDGF-BB induced the binding of NFATs to these regulatory sequences in a CsA- and VIVIT-sensitive manner. Chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis showed that NFATc1 binds to the cyclin A promoter in response to PDGF-BB in a VIVIT-sensitive manner. Furthermore, PDGF-BB induced cyclin A promoter-luciferase reporter gene activity in VSMC, and it was inhibited by both CsA and VIVIT. Balloon injury induced cyclin A expression and CDK2 activity in rat carotid arteries, and these responses were also blocked by VIVIT. In addition, VIVIT attenuated balloon injury-induced SMC proliferation, resulting in reduced restenosis. Down-regulation of NFATc1 by its small interfering RNA inhibited PDGF-BB-induced cyclin A expression and DNA synthesis both in rat and human VSMC. Together, these findings demonstrate that the cyclin A-CDK2 complex may be a potential effector of NFATs, specifically NFATc1, in mediating SMC multiplication leading to neointima formation. Therefore, NFATs may be used as target molecules for the development of therapeutic agents against vascular diseases such as restenosis.

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