Platelet-derived growth factor stimulates membrane lipid synthesis through activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and sterol regulatory element-binding proteins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We analyzed the transcriptional program elicited by stimulation of normal human fibroblasts with platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) using cDNA microarrays. 103 significantly regulated transcripts that had not been previously linked to PDGF signaling were identified. Among them, a cluster of genes involved in fatty acid and cholesterol biosynthesis, including stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD), fatty acid synthase, and hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA synthase (HMGCS), was up-regulated by PDGF after 24 h of treatment, and their expression correlated with increased membrane lipid production. These genes are known to be controlled by sterol regulatory element-binding proteins (SREBP). PDGF increased the amount of mature SREBP-1 and regulated the promoters of SCD and HMGCS in an SREBP-dependent manner. In line with these results, blocking SREBP processing by addition of 25-hydroxycholesterol blunted the effects of PDGF on lipogenic enzymes. SREBP activation was dependent on the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway, as judged from the effects of the inhibitor LY294002 and mutation of the PDGF receptor tyrosines that bind the PI3K adaptor subunit p85. Fibroblast growth factors (FGF-2 and FGF-4) and other growth factors mimicked the effects of PDGF on NIH3T3 and human fibroblasts. In conclusion, our results suggest that growth factors induce membrane lipid synthesis via the activation SREBP and PI3K.


  • Jean-Baptiste Demoulin
  • Johan Ericsson
  • Anders Kallin
  • Charlotte Rorsman
  • Lars Rönnstrand
  • Carl-Henrik Heldin
External organisations
  • Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Uppsala branch
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Medicinal Chemistry
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35392-35402
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number34
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Publication categoryResearch
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Experimental Clinical Chemistry (013016010)

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