Glycosylation of vascular endothelial growth factor is not required for its mitogenic activity

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1992 Feb 14;182(3):1340-7. doi: 10.1016/0006-291x(92)91880-y.


We have stably expressed the cDNA encoding the 165 amino-acid long form of human vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in BHK-21 cells. VEGF was partially purified from the conditioned medium of transfected cells using heparin-sepharose affinity chromatography. The partially purified VEGF was mitogenic for various types of endothelial cells and inhibited the binding of pure [125I]VEGF to its receptors. Western blot analysis, using anti-VEGF antibodies, revealed a 47 kDa VEGF homodimer in the partially purified VEGF fraction. Preincubation of the transfected cells with the N-glycosylation inhibitor tunicamycin resulted in the conversion of the 47 kDa VEGF homodimer into a smaller, deglycosylated form of 42 kDa. Partially purified preparations of the deglycosylated VEGF displayed a mitogenic activity that was similar to that of the glycosylated form and efficiently inhibited the binding of native [125I]VEGF to the VEGF receptors of bovine aortic arch derived endothelial cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cattle
  • Cell Division
  • Cell Line
  • Cells, Cultured
  • DNA / genetics
  • DNA / isolation & purification
  • Endothelial Growth Factors / genetics*
  • Endothelial Growth Factors / isolation & purification
  • Endothelial Growth Factors / pharmacology
  • Endothelium, Vascular / drug effects
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiology*
  • Glycosylation
  • Humans
  • Lymphokines / genetics*
  • Lymphokines / isolation & purification
  • Lymphokines / pharmacology
  • Mitogens / genetics
  • Plasmids
  • Recombinant Proteins / isolation & purification
  • Recombinant Proteins / pharmacology
  • Restriction Mapping
  • Transfection*
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors


  • Endothelial Growth Factors
  • Lymphokines
  • Mitogens
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors
  • DNA