Stress alters vascular-endothelial growth factor expression in rat arteries: role of nerve growth factor

Basic Res Cardiol. 2005 Mar;100(2):121-30. doi: 10.1007/s00395-004-0502-7. Epub 2004 Nov 23.


The aim of this study was to investigate the role of stress and nerve growth factor (NGF) on the expression of vascular-endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and NGF high-affinity receptor (tyrosine kinase A, TrKA) in the ascending and abdominal aorta.Adult male rats were exposed to immobilization stress for one hour or injected with purified murine NGF. Four hours after treatments, rats were sacrificed and VEGF, NGF and TrkA expression in ascending and abdominal aorta evaluated. The effects of anti-NGF treatment on arterial VEGF expression and on stress-induced arterial cell proliferation were also studied in control and stressed rats.The data indicated that both stress and NGF injection induced a rapid increase of arterial VEGF associated with an elevated level of NGF and TrkA in arterial tissues. Blocking NGF action by neutralizing NGF-antibodies, results in down-regulation of stress-induced VEGF expression by arteries and in the blockade of stress-induced proliferation of cells from the arterial wall.Overall our data demonstrated that NGF is involved in the regulation of VEGF and in cardiac vessels response after emotional stress.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies
  • Aorta / metabolism*
  • Aorta / pathology
  • Aorta, Abdominal / metabolism
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Injections, Intravenous
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Nerve Growth Factor / administration & dosage
  • Nerve Growth Factor / immunology
  • Nerve Growth Factor / metabolism*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Receptor, trkA / metabolism*
  • Restraint, Physical
  • Stress, Psychological / etiology
  • Stress, Psychological / metabolism*
  • Stress, Psychological / pathology
  • Time Factors
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / metabolism*


  • Antibodies
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • vascular endothelial growth factor A, rat
  • Nerve Growth Factor
  • Receptor, trkA