Glioblastoma is an aggressive brain tumor characterized by an abnormal blood vasculature that is hyperpermeable. Here, we report a novel role for CD93 in regulating angiogenesis in this setting by modulating cell-cell and cell-matrix adhesion of endothelial cells. Tissue microarray analysis demonstrated that vascular expression of CD93 was correlated with poor survival in a clinical cohort of patients with high-grade astrocytic glioma. Similarly, intracranial growth in the GL261 mouse model of glioma was delayed significantly in CD93(-/-) hosts, resulting in improved survival compared with wild-type mice. This effect was associated with increased vascular permeability and decreased vascular perfusion of tumors, indicating reduced vessel functionality in the absence of CD93. RNAi-mediated attenuation of CD93 in endothelial cells diminished VEGF-induced tube formation in a three-dimensional collagen gel. CD93 was required for efficient endothelial cell migration and proper cell polarization in vitro. Further, in endothelial cells where CD93 was attenuated, decreased cell spreading led to a severe reduction in cell adhesion, a lack of proper cell contacts, a loss of VE-cadherin, and aberrant actin stress fiber formation. Our results identify CD93 as a key regulator of glioma angiogenesis and vascular function, acting via cytoskeletal rearrangements required for cell-cell and cell-matrix adhesion.
©2015 American Association for Cancer Research.