The gut hormone apelin is a major therapeutic focus for several diseases involving inflammation and aberrant cell growth. We investigated whether apelin-36 contained alternative bioactive peptides associated with normal physiology or disease. Amino acid sequence analysis of apelin-36 identified an amidation motif consistent with the formation of a secondary bioactive peptide (SCNH2). SCNH2 is proven to be mitogenic and chemotactic in normal/malignant cells and augments angiogenesis via a PTX-resistant/CT-X-sensitive G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR). Notably, SCNH2 is substantially more potent and sensitive than apelin-13 and vascular endothelial growth factor-A. Endogenous SCNH2 is highly expressed in human tumors and placenta and in mouse embryonic tissues. Our findings demonstrate that SCNH2 is a new apelinergic member with critical pluripotent roles in angiogenesis related diseases and embryogenesis via a non-APJ GPCR.
Fang, C., Avis, I., Bianco, C., Held, N., Morris, J., Ylaya, K., … Cuttitta, F. (2013). SCNH2 is a novel apelinergic family member acting as a potent mitogenic and chemotactic factor for both endothelial and epithelial cells. Open Journal of Clinical Diagnostics, 03(02), 37–51. https://doi.org/10.4236/ojcd.2013.32009