This project aims to elucidate pathogenetic mechanisms in cerebral cavernous malformations (CCMs), a clinical syndrome in the brain and spinal cord marked by venous sinusoids that predispose to intracranial hemorrhage. Three genes have been identified as causes of CCMs;KRIT1 (CCM1), MGC4607 (CCM2), and PDCD10 (CCM3), which when mutated leads to the formation of neurovascular malformations. We propose that CCM genes regulate beta1 integrin-mediated signaling pathways during angiogenesis, remodeling, and/or homeostasis of the microvasculature and that perturbation of this process contributes to the development of CCMs. We have specifically silenced krit1 expression in cultured human vascular endothelial cells and observed dramatic perturbations in cellular proliferation, motility, and survival. We have also demonstrated: 1) interaction of krit1 with icap1alpha, a known mediator of beta1 integrin signaling;2) interaction of krit1 with MGC4607;3) perturbation of cultured endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and survival accompanied by reduced signaling through focal adhesion kinase (FAK), Rac1, and integrin-linked kinase (ILK) cascades, respectively, after siRNA-mediated silencing of either krit1 or icap1alpha;4) enhancement of multiple beta1 integrin signaling cascades through targeting icap1 to the cell membrane;and 5) failed nuclear localization and degradation of icap1alpha and MGC4607 after silencing of krit1;6) well documented cardiovascular defects of Ccm1 (santa, san) and Ccm2 (valentine, vtn) zebrafish, and 7) perturbation of vasculatures due to increased vascular endothelial cell apoptosis in san zebrafish. In this research project, we will focus on three critical areas: 1). Isolation of the GFP-labeled vascular endothelial cells during pathogenesis of zebrafish Ccms;2). The elucidation of the role of Ccm genes in the angiogenesis/vasculogenesis with multiple genomic and proteomic analysis of the vascular endothelial cells during pathogenesis of zebrafish CCMs;and 3) identification of other cellular factors interacting of krit1, MGC4607, and PDCD10 during microvascular angiogenesis. This animal research will provide detailed knowledge regarding the cellular role of CCM genes and their complex in vascular endothelial cells during angiogenesis, a critical first step in the development of nonsurgical therapeutic strategies for microvascular malformations.

Public Health Relevance

Cerebral cavernous malformations (CCMs) is a vascular syndrome in the brain that causes stroke. CCMs occur in approximately 0.5% of the population and represent 10% of all vascular malformations. Since CCM is the major cause for seizures among Hispanic ethnic group which contributes to over 85% population in El Paso, our proposed genomic and proteomic study on animal model is not only essential for understanding the molecular pathogenesis of this disease, but also extremely important for regional public health.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Exploratory/Developmental Grants (R21)
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Brain Injury and Neurovascular Pathologies Study Section (BINP)
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Gwinn, Katrina
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Texas Tech University
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Zhang, Jun; Dubey, Pallavi; Padarti, Akhil et al. (2017) Novel functions of CCM1 delimit the relationship of PTB/PH domains. Biochim Biophys Acta Proteins Proteom 1865:1274-1286
Osborn, Michael F; Miller, Charles C; Badr, Ahmed et al. (2014) Metabolic syndrome associated with ischemic stroke among the Mexican Hispanic population in the El Paso/US-Mexico border region. J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis 23:1477-84
Zhang, Jun; Carr, Chris; Badr, Ahmed (2011) The Cardiovascular Triad of Dysfunctional Angiogenesis. Transl Stroke Res 2:339-345
Liu, Huiling; Rigamonti, Daniele; Badr, Ahmed et al. (2011) Ccm1 regulates microvascular morphogenesis during angiogenesis. J Vasc Res 48:130-40
Zhang, Jun; Chiodini, Rod; Badr, Ahmed et al. (2011) The impact of next-generation sequencing on genomics. J Genet Genomics 38:95-109
Liu, Huiling; Rigamonti, Daniele; Badr, Ahmed et al. (2010) Ccm1 Assures Microvascular Integrity During Angiogenesis. Transl Stroke Res 1:146-153