VEGF and angiopoietin-1 exert opposing effects on cell junctions by regulating the Rho GEF Syx

Siu P. Ngok, Rory Geyer, Miaoliang Liu, Antonis Kourtidis, Sudesh Agrawal, Chuanshen Wu, Himabindu Reddy Seerapu, Laura J. Lewis-Tuffin, Karen L. Moodie, Deborah Huveldt, Ruth Marx, Jay M. Baraban, Peter Storz, Arie Horowitz, Panos Z. Anastasiadis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and Ang1 (Angiopoietin-1) have opposing effects on vascular permeability, but the molecular basis of these effects is not fully known. We report in this paper that VEGF and Ang1 regulate endothelial cell (EC) junctions by determining the localization of the RhoAspecific guanine nucleotide exchange factor Syx. Syx was recruited to junctions by members of the Crumbs polarity complex and promoted junction integrity by activating Diaphanous. VEGF caused translocation of Syx from cell junctions, promoting junction disassembly, whereas Ang1 maintained Syx at the junctions, inducing junction stabilization. The VEGF-induced translocation of Syx from EC junctions was caused by PKD1 (protein kinase D1)-mediated phosphorylation of Syx at Ser806, which reduced Syx association to its junctional anchors. In support of the pivotal role of Syx in regulating EC junctions, syx-/- mice had defective junctions, resulting in vascular leakiness, edema, and impaired heart function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1103-1115
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Dec 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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