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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2006 (2006), Article ID 97287, 17 pages
Research Article

6A3-5/Osa2 is an Early Activated Gene Implicated in the Control of Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell Functions

1INSERM XR331, Faculté of Médicine Laënnec, Lyon 69372, France
2Genomics and Atherothrombosis, Thrombosis Research Institute, London SW3 6LR, UK
3Département de Physiologie et Pharmacologie Clinique, Faculté de Pharmacie, Université Lyon 1, Lyon, France
4Hubrecht Laboratory, Netherlands Institute for Developmental Biology, Utrecht, The Netherlands
5Center for Cardiovascular Biology and Medicine, King's College, University of London, UK

Received 17 April 2006; Revised 11 July 2006; Accepted 17 July 2006

Copyright © 2006 Gwenaele Garin et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) growth plays a key role in the pathophysiology of vascular diseases. However, the molecular mechanisms controlling gene transcription in VSMC remain poorly understood. We previously identified, by differential display, a new gene (6A3-5) overexpressed in proliferating rat VSMC. In this study, we have cloned the full-length cDNA by screening a rat foetal brain cDNA library and investigated its functions. The 6A3-5 protein shows 4 putative conserved functional motifs: a DNA binding domain called ARID (AT-rich interaction domain), two recently described motifs (Osa Homology Domain), and a nuclear localization signal. The deduced protein sequence was observed to be 85% identical to the recently described human Osa2 gene. Immunolabelling, using an anti-6A3-5/Osa2 monoclonal antibody, showed a nuclear localization of the 6A3-5/Osa2 protein. In addition, PDGF upregulated 6A3-5/Osa2 expression at both the transcript and protein levels in a dose and time-dependent fashion. The pattern of upregulation by PDGF was reminiscent of the early responsive gene c-fos. The PDGF-induced upregulation of 6A3-5/Osa2 and proliferation of VSMC were significantly inhibited in a dose and sequence-dependent fashion by an antisense, but not by sense, scrambled or mismatched oligonucleotides directed against 6A3-5/Osa2. In VSMC of aortas derived from hypertensive (LH) rats, 6A3-5/Osa2 is overexpressed as compared to that in normotensive (LL) rats. The 6A3-5/Osa2-gene expression is downregulated by an ACE inhibitor and upregulated by exogenous AngiotensinII in LH rats. In summary, these results indicate that 6A3-5/Osa2 is an early activated gene that belongs to a new family of proteins involved in the control of VSMC growth.