Skip Navigation
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

Your Environment. Your Health.

Publication Detail

Title: Effects of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) on vascular endothelial growth factor induction through phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/AP-1-dependent, HIF-1alpha-independent pathway.

Authors: Ding, Jin; Li, Jingxia; Chen, Jingyuan; Chen, Haobin; Ouyang, Weiming; Zhang, Ronghe; Xue, Caifang; Zhang, Dongyun; Amin, Shantu; Desai, Dhimant; Huang, Chuanshu

Published In J Biol Chem, (2006 Apr 07)

Abstract: Previous studies have demonstrated that exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and its derivatives is associated with an increased risk of skin cancers, and the carcinogenic effect of PAHs is thought to involve both tumor initiation and promotion. Whereas PAH tumor initiation is well characterized, the mechanisms involved in the tumor promotion of PAHs remain elusive. In the present study, we investigated the effects of PAHs on vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression by comparison of its induction between the active metabolite and its parent compound (B[a]PDE versus B[a]P) or between active compound and its relatively inactive analog (5-MCDE versus CDE). We found that exposure of cells to (+/-)-anti-benzo-[a]pyrene-7,8-diol-9,10-epoxide (B[a]PDE) or (+/-)-anti-5-methylchrysene-1,2-diol-3,4-epoxide (5-MCDE) led to marked induction of VEGF in Cl41 cells, whereas benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P) or chrysene-1,2-diol-3,4-epoxide (CDE) did not exhibit significant inductive effects. Exposure of cells to B[a]PDE and 5-MCDE did not induce HIF-1alpha activation, whereas AP-1 was significantly activated. Moreover, overexpression of TAM67 (a dominant-negative mutant c-Jun) dramatically blocked that VEGF induction. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay showed that AP-1 was only able to specifically recognize and bind to its AP-1 potential binding site within -1136 and -1115 of the VEGF promoter region. Site-directed mutation of this AP-1 binding site eliminated the VEGF transcriptional activity induced by B[a]PDE, suggesting that the AP-1 binding site between -1136 and -1115 in the VEGF promoter region is critical for VEGF induction by B[a]PDE. In addition, overexpression of Deltap85 (a dominant-negative mutant PI-3K) impaired B[a]PDE- and 5-MCDE-induced VEGF induction. Considering our previous findings that PI-3K is an upstream mediator for c-Jun/AP-1 activation, we conclude that the VEGF induction by B[a]PDE and 5-MCDE is through PI-3K/AP-1-dependent and HIF-1alpha-independent pathways. These findings may help us to understand the mechanisms involved in PAH carcinogenic effects.

PubMed ID: 16461351 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Animals; Cell Culture Techniques; Epidermal Cells; Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1, alpha Subunit/biosynthesis; Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1, alpha Subunit/physiology*; Mice; Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases/metabolism; Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons/pharmacology*; Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons/toxicity*; Signal Transduction; Skin Neoplasms/chemically induced; Skin Neoplasms/physiopathology; Transcription Factor AP-1/physiology; Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A/biosynthesis*; Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A/drug effects; Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A/metabolism

to Top