Pathological roles of the VEGF/SphK pathway in Niemann-Pick type C neurons

Citations of this article
Mendeley users who have this article in their library.


© 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. Sphingosine is a major storage compound in Niemann-Pick type C disease (NP-C), although the pathological role(s) of this accumulation have not been fully characterized. Here we found that sphingosine kinase (SphK) activity is reduced in NP-C patient fibroblasts and NP-C mouse Purkinje neurons (PNs) due to defective vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) levels. Sphingosine accumulation due to inactivation of VEGF/SphK pathway led to PNs loss via inhibition of autophagosome-lysosome fusion in NP-C mice. VEGF activates SphK by binding to VEGFR2, resulting in decreased sphingosine storage as well as improved PNs survival and clinical outcomes in NP-C cells and mice. We also show that induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived human NP-C neurons are generated and the abnormalities caused by VEGF/SphK inactivity in these cells are corrected by replenishment of VEGF. Overall, these results reveal a pathogenic mechanism in NP-C neurons where defective SphK activity is due to impaired VEGF levels.




Lee, H., Lee, J. K., Park, M. H., Hong, Y. R., Marti, H. H., Kim, H., … Jin, H. K. (2014). Pathological roles of the VEGF/SphK pathway in Niemann-Pick type C neurons. Nature Communications, 5.

Register to see more suggestions

Mendeley helps you to discover research relevant for your work.

Already have an account?

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free