• VEGF-D;
  • lung cancer;
  • atomic force microscope;
  • gene transfer


Vascular endothelial growth factor-D (VEGF-D) together with VEGF-C is considered to be associated with lymphangiogenesis and angiogenesis and involve in tumorization. This study aims to investigate the influence of exogenous VEGF-D gene on the biophysical property of cell surface of lung adenocarcinoma cell line. A panel of lung adenocarcinoma cell lines were examined the expression of VEGF-D and VEGF-C by real-time PCR. The VEGF-D recombinant plasmid containing enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP) was constructed and transfected to the cell line with no expression of VEGF-D and confirmed by real-time PCR and Western blot analysis. Topographic images of cells were obtained by using atomic force microscope (AFM) in contact mode. Unlike VEGF-C, VEGF-D was found to have a very low expression or undetectable expression in lung adenocarcinoma cell lines. The VEGF-D recombinant plasmid had been constructed successfully and was transferred into the human lung adenocarcinoma cell line A549 cells which had no endogenous expression of VEGF-D, and exogenous VEGF-D could be detected in mRNA and protein expression levels in the gene modified cells, while the VEGF-C gene expression had no change after VEGF-D transfection. After transfection, the irregular microspikes or nano clusters could observe on the surface of A549 cells, and VEGF-D transfected A549 cells became more rigid. The exogenous VEGF-D gene might cause the remarkable biophysical architectural changes in the A549 cells, which might as a novel biomarker for evaluation of its biological function. SCANNING 36:202–208, 2014. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.