Angiogenesis, the formation of new vessels, under normal conditions, is both spatially and temporally tightly regulated. Abolishment of the regulatory mechanisms leads to unregulated formation of new capillaries which is fundamental for the growth of solid tumors. The host group has investigated the association between oncogene activation and pathological angiogenesis during the process of neoplastic transformation. They have isolated from conditioned medium of tumor cells four proteins that are involved in the regulation of angiogenesis and their expression is regulated by the MYCN oncogene. Amino acid sequencing of one of them, called WI.1, revealed that it was a novel protein.
In the frame of this grant application, we propose to study the functio of WI. 1 protein in transgenic mice (overexpression and knockout). Embryonic development is dependent on new vessel formation and such experiments will elucidate the potential role of the WI. 1 protein as a regulator of angiogenesis.