Extracellular HtrA2 induces apoptosis in human umbilical vein endothelial cells Academic Article uri icon


  • The serine protease high-temperature-required protein A2 (HtrA2) has been identified as a key intracellular molecule promoting apoptosis in cells during ischemia reperfusion (IR) injury. IR injury in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) contributes to overall myocardial damage. HtrA2 has further been shown to be significantly increased in the serum of patients with STEMI. In the present pilot study, we use human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) to investigate whether extracellular HtrA2 induces apoptosis using Annexin V staining. Furthermore, we examine whether HtrA2 is released extracellularly after staurosporine-induced apoptosis using ELISA. We find that HtrA2 is released upon induction of apoptosis by staurosporine into the cell culture medium. Furthermore, treatment of HUVECs with extracellular HtrA2-induces apoptosis, while the addition of anti-HtrA2 antibodies reduces both HtrA2- and staurosporine-induced endothelial cell apoptosis. In conclusion, we show here that extracellular HtrA2 induces apoptosis in human endothelial cells, although the exact molecular mechanisms have to be investigated in future.


  • Kaur, G
  • Stallmann, D
  • Schanze, N
  • Laumann, R
  • Heger, LA
  • Steinfurt, J
  • Stachon, P
  • Peter, Karlheinz
  • Bode, C
  • Moser, M
  • Ahrens, I
  • Duerschmied, D
  • Hortmann, M

publication date

  • 2019