Biological responses to PDGF-AA versus PDGF-CC in renal fibroblasts

Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2013 Apr;28(4):889-900. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfs509. Epub 2012 Dec 9.


Background: Platelet-derived growth factors (PDGF)-AA and -CC mediate renal fibroblast proliferation and/or renal fibrosis. Whereas PDGF-CC binds to both the PDGF receptors (PDGFRs)-αα- and -αβ, PDGF-AA binds more selectively to the αα-receptor, suggesting potential differences in the biological activities.

Methods: We compared signal transduction, gene expression as well as changes in the proteome induced by PDGF-AA and -CC in rat renal fibroblasts, which express both PDGFR subunits. The growth factor concentrations used were chosen based on their equipotency in inducing rat renal fibroblast proliferation.

Results: Both PDGF-AA and PDGF-CC induced phosphorylation and activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 (ERK1) and ERK2. Renal fibroblast proliferation induced by either PDGF-AA or -CC could be blocked by signal transduction inhibitors of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)-, Janus-kinase (JAK)/signal transducers and activators of transcription (STAT) and phosphatidyl-inositol-3-kinase (PI3K) pathway, pointing to the involvement of all the three pathways. However, quantitative differences between both the stimulations were minor. Additive or synergistic effects by stimulating simultaneously with PDGF-AA and -CC were not observed. Using a proteomic approach we found eleven differentially expressed proteins, which were quantitatively altered after treatment with either PDGF-AA or PDGF-CC. The regulation of calreticulin and inorganic pyrophosphatase 1 could be verified by western blotting.

Conclusions: PDGF-AA and -CC exhibit almost identical biological effects on signal transduction and proteome in cultured renal fibroblasts, suggesting that the ligands exert their activity essentially through the commonly bound PDGFR-αα. Nonetheless, two differentially expressed proteins were identified which might be involved in the development of renal failure.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Electrophoresis, Gel, Two-Dimensional
  • Electrophoretic Mobility Shift Assay
  • Fibroblasts / cytology
  • Fibroblasts / metabolism*
  • Kidney / cytology
  • Kidney / metabolism*
  • Lymphokines / genetics
  • Lymphokines / metabolism*
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase 1 / genetics
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase 1 / metabolism*
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase 3 / genetics
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase 3 / metabolism*
  • Phosphorylation
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / genetics
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor / metabolism*
  • Proteomics
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Rats
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Signal Transduction
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization


  • Lymphokines
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor
  • RNA, Messenger
  • platelet-derived growth factor A
  • platelet-derived growth factor C
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase 1
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase 3