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“All-in-one” in vitro selection of collagen-binding vascular endothelial growth factor

Park, Shin-Hye, Uzawa, Takanori, Hattori, Fumiyuki, Ogino, Shuichi, Morimoto, Naoki, Tsuneda, Satoshi, Ito, Yoshihiro
Biomaterials 2018 v.161 pp. 270-278
angiogenesis, binding capacity, collagen, endothelial cells, evolution, medicine, myocardial infarction, myocardium, therapeutics, vascular endothelial growth factors
To enhance the therapeutic effect of growth factors, a powerful strategy is to direct their localization to damaged sites. To treat skin wounds and myocardial infarction, we selected vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) carrying binding affinity to collagen. A simple conjugation of a reported collagen-binding sequence and VEGF did not increase the collagen-binding affinity, indicating that the molecular interaction between the two proteins abolished collagen binding activity. Here, we present a new molecular evolution strategy, “all-in-one” in vitro selection, in which a collagen-binding VEGF (CB-VEGF) was directly identified from a random library consisting of random and VEGF sequences. As expected, the selected CB-VEGFs exhibited high binding affinity to collagen and maintained the same growth enhancement activity for endothelial cells as unmodified VEGF in solution. Furthermore, the selected CB-VEGF enhanced angiogenesis at skin wounds and infarcted myocardium. This study demonstrates that “all-in-one” in vitro selection is a novel strategy for the design of functional proteins for regenerative medicine.