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Nogo-B regulates endothelial sphingolipid homeostasis to control vascular function and blood pressure


Endothelial dysfunction is a critical factor in many cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension. Although lipid signaling has been implicated in endothelial dysfunction and cardiovascular disease, specific molecular mechanisms are poorly understood. Here we report that Nogo-B, a membrane protein of the endoplasmic reticulum, regulates endothelial sphingolipid biosynthesis with direct effects on vascular function and blood pressure. Nogo-B inhibits serine palmitoyltransferase, the rate-limiting enzyme of the de novo sphingolipid biosynthetic pathway, thereby controlling production of endothelial sphingosine 1-phosphate and autocrine, G protein–coupled receptor–dependent signaling by this metabolite. Mice lacking Nogo-B either systemically or specifically in endothelial cells are hypotensive, resistant to angiotensin II–induced hypertension and have preserved endothelial function and nitric oxide release. In mice that lack Nogo-B, pharmacological inhibition of serine palmitoyltransferase with myriocin reinstates endothelial dysfunction and angiotensin II–induced hypertension. Our study identifies Nogo-B as a key inhibitor of local sphingolipid synthesis and shows that autocrine sphingolipid signaling within the endothelium is critical for vascular function and blood pressure homeostasis.

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Figure 1: Loss of Nogo-A and Nogo-B upregulates eNOS-NO and flow-mediated vasodilation, leading to hypotension.
Figure 2: Nogo-B is a negative regulator of sphingolipid de novo biosynthesis.
Figure 3: Nogo-B regulates sphingolipid de novo biosynthesis to affect blood pressure through S1P-S1P1 signaling.
Figure 4: Lack of Nogo-A/B protects mice from AngII-induced hypertension and endothelial dysfunction.
Figure 5: Lack of endothelial Nogo-B protects mice from AngII-induced hypertension and endothelial dysfunction.
Figure 6: Endothelial Nogo-B is a critical mediator of hypertension and vascular dysfunction through negative regulation of sphingolipid de novo biosynthesis.

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This work was supported by European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) Action BM1005 European Network on Gasotransmitters (ENOG) to M.B.; US National Institutes of Health (NIH) R37-HL67330 and R01HL89934 to T.H.; NIH R01HL126913-01, a Harold S. Geneen Charitable Trust Award for Coronary Heart Disease Research and American Heart Association grant 11SDG5710010 to A.D.L.

Author information




A.C. and Y.Z. designed and carried out experiments, analyzed results and contributed to writing the manuscript. M.K. contributed with preparation of WT and Nogo-A/B-deficient MLEC for sphingolipid measurements. H.O. prepared HA-tagged-Nogo-B lentivirus. S.G. performed all the en face mouse aorta preparations, staining and imaging. M.B. helped in designing experiments and interpretation of results. F.J.G. contributed to designing experiments and discussion of results. X.-C. J. contributed to and oversaw the SPT enzymatic assays. T.H. contributed to design of experiments and interpretation of results and provided feedback on the manuscript. A.D.L. designed experiments, interpreted results and wrote the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Annarita Di Lorenzo.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Supplementary information

Supplementary Text and Figures

Supplementary Figures 1–4 (PDF 6988 kb)

Supplementary Data 1

Nogo-B effect on vasoconstriction. (XLSX 39 kb)

Supplementary Data 2

Sphingolipid levels in vascular SMC and SPT assay in EC. (XLSX 36 kb)

Supplementary Data 3

Effects of W146 and myriocin on vascular tone regulation. (XLSX 73 kb)

Supplementary Data 4

Nogo-B excision in EC-Nogo-A/B-deficient and SMC-Nogo-A/B-deficient mice. (XLSX 46 kb)

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Cantalupo, A., Zhang, Y., Kothiya, M. et al. Nogo-B regulates endothelial sphingolipid homeostasis to control vascular function and blood pressure. Nat Med 21, 1028–1037 (2015).

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