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Angiopoietin-Like Protein 7 (ANGPTL7, Cornea-Derived Transcript 6, CDT6)

The angiopoietins are a family of growth factors that are specific for vascular endothelium or metabolic regulation. A full-length cDNA encoding angiopoietin-like protein 7 (ANGPTL7), which is also called cornea-derived transcript 6; CDT6, was isolated from the human cornea. The deduced 346-amino acid ANGPTL7 protein has the characteristic structure of the other ANGPTL family members : a signal peptide, an extended helical domain predicted to form dimeric or trimeric coiled-coils, a short linker peptide, and a globular fibrinogen-like domain. Gene expression profile analysis suggests that the cornea is a major organ expressing ANGPTL7 whereas brain, liver or pancreas also express ANGPTL7, suggesting ANGTL7 primailiy plays an important role in eye function and may be also implicated in metabolism. In fact, in the search for genes altered by glaucomatous insults, ANGPTL7 was identified as one of the mostly induced genes. It has been found that overexpression of ANGPTL7 in primary human trabecular meshwork cells altered the expression of fibronectin, collagens type I, IV & V, myocilin, versican, and MMP1, suggesting ANGPTL7 may be a causative gene for glaucoma. ANGPTL7 secretion is induced by glaucoma stimuli such as dexamethasone (DEX) or transforming growth factor beta (TGFβ) and its concentration determined by western blot is elevated in glaucomatous aqueous humor, suggesting an important role in glaucoma. ANGPTL7 reduces tumor growth and aberrant blood vessel formation by inducing massive fibrosis (4–5) Characterized as potent target gene of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, it is a pharmacogenomics target in the fields of oncology and regenerative medicine. However, its humoral quantitative levels such as serum, plasma, or glaucomatous aqueous humor are in response to glaucoma, tumors, or metabolic dysfunctions remain unknown but may be interesting to know the status of these diseases.

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