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    Abnormal placental angiogenesis is an important cause of fetal intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), but its underlying mechanisms and therapies remain unclear. Adenosine and its mediated signaling has been reported to be associated with the development of angiogenesis. However, whether the adenosine-related signaling plays a role in modulating angiogenesis in placenta and the IUGR pregnancy outcomes remains unclear. The angiogenesis and adenosine signaling expressions in normal and IUGR placentas were detected in different species. And the role of adenosine in regulating IUGR pregnancy outcomes was evaluated using diet-induced IUGR mouse model. Molecular mechanisms underlying adenosine-induced angiogenesis were investigated by in vitro angiogenesis assays and in vivo Matrigel plug assays. Here, we demonstrated poor angiogenesis and low adenosine concentration and downregulated expression of its receptor A2a (ADORA2A [adenosine A2a receptor]) in IUGR placenta. Additionally, the beneficial effects of adenosine in improving IUGR pregnancy outcomes were revealed in a diet-induced IUGR mouse model. Moreover, adenosine was found to effectively improve adenosine signaling and angiogenesis in IUGR mice placenta. Mechanistically, by using angiogenesis assays in vitro and in vivo, adenosine was shown to activate ADORA2A to promote the phosphorylation of Stat3 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 3) and Akt (protein kinase B), resulting in increased Ang (angiogenin)-dependent angiogenesis. Collectively, this study uncovers an unexpected mechanism of promoting placental angiogenesis by adenosine-ADORA2A signaling and advances the translation of this signaling as a prognostic indicator and therapeutic target in IUGR treatment.


    Zifang Wu, Quanhang Xiang, Li Feng, Deyuan Wu, Shuangbo Huang, Longmiao Zhang, Sujuan Rao, Jinxi Luo, Wenyu Xiong, Jinping Deng, Kai Zhou, Yulong Yin, Wei Shi, Chengquan Tan. Adenosine-ADORA2A Promotes Ang-Induced Angiogenesis in Intrauterine Growth Restriction Placenta via the Stat3/Akt Pathway. Arteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology. 2023 Jun;43(6):e190-e209

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    PMID: 37051927

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