Generation of angiostatin-like fragments from plasminogen by prostate-specific antigen

Br J Cancer. 1999 Dec;81(8):1269-73. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6692167.


Angiostatin, a potent inhibitor of angiogenesis, tumour growth and metastasis, is a biologically active fragment of plasminogen, containing the kringle domains 1-4. It is generated from plasminogen by limited proteolysis. We show that prostate-specific antigen (PSA), a serine proteinase secreted by human prostate and human prostate cancer cells, is able to convert Lys-plasminogen to biologically active angiostatin-like fragments, containing kringles 1-4, by limited proteolysis of peptide bond Glu439-Ala440 in vitro. In an in vitro morphogenesis assay, the purified angiostatin-like fragments inhibited proliferation and tubular formation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells with the same efficacy as angiostatin. This finding might help to understand growth characteristics of prostate cancer, which usually has low microvessel density and slow proliferation.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Angiostatins
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Peptide Fragments / biosynthesis*
  • Peptide Fragments / chemistry*
  • Peptide Fragments / isolation & purification
  • Plasminogen / chemistry*
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / chemistry*


  • Peptide Fragments
  • Angiostatins
  • Plasminogen
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen