Vascular endothelial growth factor and the risk of smoking-related COPD

Chest. 2003 Jul;124(1):323-7. doi: 10.1378/chest.124.1.323.


Study objectives: Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) signaling may be required for maintenance of the alveolar structures, and alveolar septal cell apoptosis could contribute to the pathogenesis of COPD presenting emphysematous changes; however, the common mutation at position 936 in the 3' untranslated region of the VEGF gene, a C to T substitution (the C allele was denoted as 1, and the T allele as 2), VEGF936*2, has been reported to be associated with significantly lower VEGF plasma levels. Based on these concepts, we hypothesized that VEGF936*1/2 polymorphism may be linked to the development of COPD.

Design: The differences in VEGF936*1/2 allele frequency were examined in 113 patients with smoking-related COPD and two control groups (101 smoker/ex-smoker control subjects and 102 population control subjects) using the polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism technique.

Results: VEGF936*1/2 allele frequencies did not differ among the groups: 0.792/0.208 in COPD patients, 0.822/0.178 in smoker/ex-smoker control subjects, and 0.842/0.152 in population control subjects.

Conclusion: The 936 C/T polymorphism of the VEGF gene (including both homozygous and heterozygous) was not associated with the development of COPD (odds ratio, 1.23; 95% confidence interval, 0.760 to 1.995).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Endothelial Growth Factors / genetics*
  • Endothelial Growth Factors / pharmacology
  • Female
  • Gene Frequency
  • Humans
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / genetics*
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / pharmacology
  • Lymphokines / genetics*
  • Lymphokines / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length
  • Protein Isoforms / genetics
  • Protein Isoforms / pharmacology
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / etiology*
  • Smoking / adverse effects*
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors


  • Endothelial Growth Factors
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Lymphokines
  • Protein Isoforms
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors