The β receptor subunit of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and its corresponding ligand (PDGF-BB) are coordinately expressed in fresh surgical isolates of human meningioma. These observations imply that PDGF autorcrine loops are engaged in human meningioma and suggest that activated PDGF-β receptors might contribute to the pathology of this common brain neoplasm. The study of PDGF autocrine loops and human meningioma has been slowed by the scarcity of meningioma cell culture model systems. Furthermore, in meningioma tumor tissue, the activation state of PDGF receptors is difficult to assess with conventional reagents, because the tumor is intermixed with normal stroma. In fact, there is no evidence that PDGF receptors within the tumor are activated by ligand. We used a synthetic tyrosine phosphopeptide to raise an antibody that reports the phosphorylation state of tyrosine 751 in the human PDGF-β receptor. Phosphorylated tyrosine 751 is a recognition site for phosphatidylinositol 3′-kinase, a cytoplasmic effector of PDGF-induced mitogenesis, chemotaxis, and membrane ruffling. Immunoblotting and immunostaining analyses with this antibody show that the PDGF-β receptor is constitutively phosphorylated at tyrosine 751 within multiple fresh surgical isolates of human meningioma. These findings are consistent with a role for activated PDGF receptors in the proliferation of human meningiomas.


This work, to which the first two authors contributed equally, was supported by NIH Grant 5PO1 HD24926.

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