Science Signaling Podcast: 23 September 2014

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Sci. Signal.  23 Sep 2014:
Vol. 7, Issue 344, pp. pc26
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2005857

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This Podcast features an interview with Micael Simons, senior author of a Research Article that appears in the 23 September 2014 issue of Science Signaling, about how FGF signaling inhibits TGF-β signaling to prevent endothelial-to-mesenchymal transitions in blood vessels. An important part of vascular homeostasis is maintaining the sheet of endothelial cells that line blood vessels. Endothelial cells are flattened, polarized cells that are tightly connected to one another to form a continuous sheet. Under certain conditions, endothelial cells can undergo an endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndMT), in which the cells lose their polarity and become less tightly associated with one another. This change in morphology and cell biology impedes the normal function of blood vessels. Transforming growth factor–β (TGF-β) signaling can induce EndMT, and signaling through the fibroblast growth factor (FGF) pathway prevents EndMT under normal conditions. Chen et al. found that FGF signaling through the receptor FGFR1 suppressed EndMT by inducing the expression of a microRNA that decreases the abundance of a TGF-β receptor, thus repressing TGF-β signaling.

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