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Low molecular weight heparin downregulates tissue factor expression and activity by modulating growth factor receptor-mediated induction of nuclear factor-κB

Ettelaie, Camille; Fountain, Donna; Collier, Mary Elizabeth W.; ElKeeb, Azza M.; Xiao, Yu Pei; Maraveyas, Anthony


Camille Ettelaie

Donna Fountain

Mary Elizabeth W. Collier

Azza M. ElKeeb

Yu Pei Xiao

Anthony Maraveyas


Treatment of cancer patients with low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) appears to have beneficial effects. In this study, the influence of low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) on tissue factor (TF) expression and activity in five cell lines from various tissues was analysed and explored. Incubation of cells with LMWH (0-2000μg/ml) resulted in the downregulation of TF mRNA expression which was both LMWH concentration-dependent and time-dependent. Downregulation of TF was also measured as decreased cellular TF antigen and activity. Consistently, incubation of cells with LMWH suppressed the nuclear localisation and the transcriptional activity of NFκB. Decreased TF mRNA was largely achievable by incubating the cells with an NFκB inhibitor alone whilst incubation with betulinic acid to activate NFκB reversed the inhibitory influence of LMWH. Cells were also incubated with a range of concentrations of EGF (0-10ng/ml), bFGF (0-20ng/ml) or VEGF (0-4ng/ml) in the presence or absence of LMWH (200μg/ml) for 24h and TF antigen measured. Inclusion of LMWH reduced TF expression in response to EGF, bFGF or VEGF but TF expression was partially restored by increasing concentrations of the growth factors. We conclude that LMWH downregulates TF expression in vitro through a mechanism that involves interference with the function of growth factors which in turn is mediated through the downregulation of the transcriptional activity of NFκB. This mechanism may also explain some of the beneficial influences attributed to LMWH therapy in the treatment of cancer patients.


Ettelaie, C., Fountain, D., Collier, M. E. W., ElKeeb, A. M., Xiao, Y. P., & Maraveyas, A. (2011). Low molecular weight heparin downregulates tissue factor expression and activity by modulating growth factor receptor-mediated induction of nuclear factor-κB. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA): Molecular Basis of Disease, 1812(12), 1591-1600.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2011-12
Deposit Date Nov 13, 2014
Publicly Available Date Nov 13, 2014
Print ISSN 0925-4439
Electronic ISSN 1879-260X
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 1812
Issue 12
Pages 1591-1600
Keywords Molecular Medicine; Molecular Biology
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Biochimica et biophysica acta. Molecular basis of disease. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Biochimica et biophysica acta, Molecular basis of disease [VOL 1812, ISSUE 12, (2011)] DOI10.1016/j.bbadis.2011.09.007


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