Development (Cambridge), 2014-06, Vol.141 (12), p.2446-2451
Collecting lymphatic ducts contain intraluminal valves that prevent backflow. In mice, lymphatic valve morphogenesis begins at embryonic day 15.5 (E15.5). In the mesentery, Prox1 expression is high in valve-forming lymphatic endothelial cells, whereas cells of the lymphatic ducts express lower levels of Prox1. Integrin α9, fibronectin EIIIA, Foxc2, calcineurin and the gap junction protein Cx37 are required for lymphatic valve formation. We show that Notch1 is expressed throughout the developing mesenteric lymphatic vessels at E16.5, and that, by E18.5, Notch1 expression becomes highly enriched in the lymphatic valve endothelial cells. Using a Notch reporter mouse, Notch activity was detected in lymphatic valves at E17.5 and E18.5. The role of Notch in lymphatic valve morphogenesis was studied using a conditional lymphatic endothelial cell driver either to delete Notch1 or to express a dominant-negative Mastermind-like (DNMAML) transgene. Deletion of Notch1 led to an expansion of Prox1(high) cells, a defect in Prox1(high) cell reorientation and a decrease in integrin α9 expression at sites of valve formation. Expression of DNMAML, which blocks all Notch signaling, resulted in a more severe phenotype characterized by a decrease in valves, failure of Prox1(high) cells to cluster, and rounding of the nuclei and decreased fibronectin-EIIIA expression in the Prox1(high) cells found at valve sites. In human dermal lymphatic endothelial cells, activation of Notch1 or Notch4 induced integrin α9, fibronectin EIIIA and Cx37 expression. We conclude that Notch signaling is required for proper lymphatic valve formation and regulates integrin α9 and fibronectin EIIIA expression during valve morphogenesis.
Lymphatic Vessels - embryology ; Dermis - metabolism ; Signal Transduction ; Humans ; Cells, Cultured ; Receptors, Notch - physiology ; Mice, Transgenic ; Gene Expression Profiling ; Integrin alpha Chains - metabolism ; Receptor, Notch1 - metabolism ; Fibronectins - metabolism ; Connexins - metabolism ; Cell Lineage ; Lymphatic Vessels - metabolism ; Animals ; Genes, Dominant ; Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental ; Gene Deletion ; Proto-Oncogene Proteins - physiology ; Mice ; Transgenes ; Receptor, Notch1 - physiology ; Receptor, Notch4 ; Index Medicus ; Integrin α9 ; Mouse ; Research Reports ; Notch ; Lymphatic valve morphogenesis
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