Cytoglobin overexpression facilitates proliferation and migration of vascular smooth muscle cells


  • Lei Li The Third School of Clinical Medicine, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, 510515
  • Yilin Xie School of Life Science and Biotechnology, Shanghai Key Laboratory for Reproductive Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, 200240
  • Li Shen The Third School of Clinical Medicine, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, 510515
  • Juanjuan Tan School of Life Science and Biotechnology, Shanghai Key Laboratory for Reproductive Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, 200240
  • Yingchun Qin Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai, 200240
  • Zhiqiang Yan 1. The Third School of Clinical Medicine, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, 510515; 2. Central Laboratory, Fengxian Hospital affiliated to Southern Medical University, Shanghai, 201499


cytoglobin, vascular smooth muscle cells, hypertension, cell migration, cell proliferation


Paper description:

  • Cytoglobin is involved in injury-induced vascular remodeling.
  • Decreased expression of cytoglobin was detected in the aorta of hypertensive rats compared to normotensive rats.
  • Cytoglobin overexpression was capable of promoting proliferation and migration of vascular smooth muscle cells, and altering the expression of extracellular matrix components.
  • Cytoglobin could play a role in pathological vascular remodeling.

Abstract: Cytoglobin, a recently discovered globin, is expressed in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs). Loss of cytoglobin provides a protective effect on vascular reconstruction but the effect of its overexpression is unclear. The aim of the study was to investigate the effect of cytoglobin overexpression on the migration and proliferation of VSMCs and possible mechanisms. We detected the expression of cytoglobin in hypertensive and normotensive rat aortas, with negative feedback regulation between cytoglobin and hypertension observed. The expression of cytoglobin was significantly decreased in hypertensive rats compared to normotensive rats, but VSMCs overexpressing cytoglobin displayed increased cell migration and proliferation, which led to a phenotypic switch. The increased expression of matrix metalloproteinase 9 and collagen Ia suggests a role for cytoglobin in extracellular matrix remodeling. Increased expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen and decreased expression of p27 implies that cytoglobin is involved in modulating VSMC proliferation. Our findings indicate that cytoglobin may play an important role in vascular wall remodeling.

Received: October 24, 2019; Revised: February 15, 2020; Accepted: February 24, 2020; Published online: February 26, 2020

How to cite this article: Li L, Xie Y, Shen L, Tan J, Qin Y, Yan Z. Cytoglobin overexpression facilitates proliferation and migration of vascular smooth muscle cells. Arch Biol Sci. 2020;72(2):165-72.



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How to Cite

Li L, Xie Y, Shen L, Tan J, Qin Y, Yan Z. Cytoglobin overexpression facilitates proliferation and migration of vascular smooth muscle cells. Arch Biol Sci [Internet]. 2020Jul.1 [cited 2024Apr.22];72(2):165-72. Available from: