Targeting G(βγ) signaling in arterial vascular smooth muscle proliferation: A novel strategy to limit restenosis

G. Iaccarino, L. A. Smithwick, R. J. Lefkowitz, W. J. Koch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Restenosis continues to be a major problem limiting the effectiveness of revascularization procedures. To date, the roles of heterotrimeric G proteins in the triggering of pathological vascular smooth muscle (VSM) cell proliferation have not been elucidated. βγ subunits of heterotrimeric G proteins (G(βγ)) are known to activate mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinases after stimulation of certain G protein-coupled receptors; however, their relevance in VSM mitogenesis in vitro or in vivo is not known. Using adenoviral-mediated transfer of a transgene encoding a peptide inhibitor of G(βγ) signaling (βARKct), we evaluated the role of G(βγ) MAP kinase activation and proliferation in response to several mitogens, including serum, in cultured rat VSM cells. Our results include the striking finding that serum-induced proliferation of VSM cells in vitro is mediated largely via G(βγ). Furthermore, we studied the effects of in vivo adenoviral- mediated βARKct gene transfer on VSM intimal hyperplasia in a rat carotid artery restenosis model. Our in vivo results demonstrated that the presence of the βARKct in injured rat carotid arteries significantly reduced VSM intimal hyperplasia by 70%. Thus, G(βγ) plays a critical role in physiological VSM proliferation, and targeted G(βγ) inhibition represents a novel approach for the treatment of pathological conditions such as restenosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3945-3950
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Mar 30 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General
  • Genetics


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