EMBO molecular medicine

Vasculotide reduces endothelial permeability and tumor cell extravasation in the absence of binding to or agonistic activation of Tie2.

PMID 25851538


Angiopoietin-1 (Ang1) activation of Tie2 receptors on endothelial cells (ECs) reduces adhesion by tumor cells (TCs) and limits junctional permeability to TC diapedesis. We hypothesized that systemic therapy with Vasculotide (VT)-a purported Ang1 mimetic, Tie2 agonist-can reduce the extravasation of potentially metastatic circulating TCs by similarly stabilizing the host vasculature. In vitro, VT and Ang1 treatments impeded endothelial hypermeability and the transendothelial migration of MDA-MB-231∙LM2-4 (breast), HT29 (colon), or SN12 (renal) cancer cells to varying degrees. In mice, VT treatment inhibited the transit of TCs through the pulmonary endothelium, but not the hepatic or lymphatic endothelium. In the in vivo LM2-4 model, VT monotherapy had no effect on primary tumors, but significantly delayed distant metastatic dissemination to the lungs. In the post-surgical adjuvant treatment setting, VT therapeutically complemented sunitinib therapy, an anti-angiogenic tyrosine kinase inhibitor which limited the local growth of residual disease. Unexpectedly, detailed investigations into the putative mechanism of action of VT revealed no evidence of Tie2 agonism or Tie2 binding; alternative mechanisms have yet to be determined.

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