Differences in hyaluronic acid-mediated functions and signaling in arterial, microvessel, and vein-derived human endothelial cells

Vinata B. Lokeshwar, Marie G. Selzer

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Hyaluronic acid (HA), a nonsulfated glycosaminoglycan, regulates cell adhesion and migration. Small HA fragments (3-25 disaccharide units) induce neovascularization. We investigated the effect of HA and a HA fragment (10-15 disaccharide units, F1) on primary human endothelial cells (ECs). Human pulmonary ECs (HPAEC) and lung microvessel ECs (HMVEC-L) bound HA (K(d) ~1 and 2.3 nM, respectively) and expressed 17,780 and 16,690 HA binding sites, respectively. Both ECs showed HA mediated cell adhesion; however, HMVEC-L was 1.5-fold better. Human umbilical vein ECs neither bound HA nor showed HA-mediated adhesion. All three ECs expressed CD44 (~110 kDa). The expression of receptor for HA-mediated motility (RHAMM) (~80 kDa) was the highest in HMVEC-L, followed by HPAEC and human umbilical vein ECs. RHAMM, not CD44, bound HA in all three ECs. F1 was better than HA and stimulated a 2.5- and 1.8-fold mitogenic response in HMVEC-L and HPAEC, respectively. Both HA and F1 induced tyrosine phosphorylation of p125(FAK), paxillin, and p42/44 ERK in HMVEC-L and HPAEC, which was blocked by an anti-RHAMM antibody. These results demonstrate that RHAMM is the functional HA receptor in primary human ECs. Heterogeneity exists among primary human ECs of different vascular origins, with respect to functional HA receptor expression and function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27641-27649
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number36
StatePublished - Sep 8 2000


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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