Zebrafish neuropilins are differentially expressed and interact with vascular endothelial growth factor during embryonic vascular development
Article first published online: 29 JUN 2004
Copyright © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Volume 231, Issue 1, pages 33–42, September 2004
How to Cite
Martyn, U. and Schulte-Merker, S. (2004), Zebrafish neuropilins are differentially expressed and interact with vascular endothelial growth factor during embryonic vascular development. Dev. Dyn., 231: 33–42. doi: 10.1002/dvdy.20048
- Issue published online: 4 AUG 2004
- Article first published online: 29 JUN 2004
- Manuscript Accepted: 19 DEC 2003
- Manuscript Revised: 17 DEC 2003
- Manuscript Received: 9 OCT 2003
- vascular endothelial growth factor;
- expression pattern
Neuropilin1 (Nrp1) and Neuropilin2 (Nrp2) are nonkinase vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFR) identified in several vertebrates, which function as coreceptors for the receptor tyrosine kinases VEGFR1 and VEGFR2. We identified four zebrafish nrp genes, nrp1a, nrp1b, nrp2a, and nrp2b, and characterized their function in vascular development. We show that all nrp genes display distinct expression patterns and that nrp1a and nrp1b are expressed in the dorsal aorta, while nrp2a and nrp2b transcripts could be detected in the region of the posterior cardinal vein. Knockdown of nrp1a, nrp1b, and nrp2a resulted in improper arteriovenous connections and irregular intersegmental vessel patterning, indicating that these Nrps function in the same process. Nrp2b knockdown also caused vessel malformations and a pericardial defect. In addition, we provide evidence that the newly identified Nrps synergistically interact with VEGF in vivo. Taken together, our results show that, in zebrafish, all four neuropilins are involved in VEGF-mediated vessel development. Developmental Dynamics 231:33–42, 2004. © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.