Detection of VEGF-Axxxb Isoforms in Human Tissues

David O Bates, Athina Mavrou, Yan Qiu, James G Carter, Maryam Hamdollah-Zadeh, Shaney Barratt, Melissa V Gammons, Ann B Millar, Andrew H J Salmon, Sebastian Oltean, Steven J Harper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-A (VEGF-A) can be generated as multiple isoforms by alternative splicing. Two families of isoforms have been described in humans, pro-angiogenic isoforms typified by VEGF-A165a, and anti-angiogenic isoforms typified by VEGF-A165b. The practical determination of expression levels of alternative isoforms of the same gene may be complicated by experimental protocols that favour one isoform over another, and the use of specific positive and negative controls is essential for the interpretation of findings on expression of the isoforms. Here we address some of the difficulties in experimental design when investigating alternative splicing of VEGF isoforms, and discuss the use of appropriate control paradigms. We demonstrate why use of specific control experiments can prevent assumptions that VEGF-A165b is not present, when in fact it is. We reiterate, and confirm previously published experimental design protocols that demonstrate the importance of using positive controls. These include using known target sequences to show that the experimental conditions are suitable for PCR amplification of VEGF-A165b mRNA for both q-PCR and RT-PCR and to ensure that mispriming does not occur. We also provide evidence that demonstrates that detection of VEGF-A165b protein in mice needs to be tightly controlled to prevent detection of mouse IgG by a secondary antibody. We also show that human VEGF165b protein can be immunoprecipitated from cultured human cells and that immunoprecipitating VEGF-A results in protein that is detected by VEGF-A165b antibody. These findings support the conclusion that more information on the biology of VEGF-A165b isoforms is required, and confirm the importance of the experimental design in such investigations, including the use of specific positive and negative controls. © 2013 Bates et al.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere68399
Pages (from-to)e68399
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume8
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2013

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Detection of VEGF-A<sub>xxx</sub>b Isoforms in Human Tissues'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this