Upregulation of erythropoietin receptor during postnatal and postpneumonectomy lung growth

David J. Foster, Orson W. Moe, Connie C W Hsia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Circulating erythropoietin (EPO) stimulates erythrocytosis, whereas organ-specific local EPO receptor (EPOR) expression has been linked to angiogenesis, tissue growth, and development. On the basis of the observation of concurrent enhancement of lung growth and erythrocyte production during exposure to chronic hypoxia, we hypothesized that a paracrine EPO system is involved in mediating lung growth. We analyzed EPOR protein expression in normal dog lung tissue during postnatal maturation and during compensatory lung growth after right pneumonectomy (PNX). Membrane-bound EPOR was significantly more abundant in the immature lung compared with mature lung and in the remaining lung 3 wk after PNX compared with matched sham controls. COOH-terminal cytosolic EPOR peptides, which were even more abundant than membrane-bound EPOR, were also upregulated in immature lung but differentially processed after PNX. Apoptosis was enhanced during both types of lung growth in direct relationship to cellular proliferation and EPOR expression. We conclude that both developmental and compensatory lung growth involve paracrine EPO signaling with parallel upregulation but differential processing of EPOR.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L1107-L1115
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology
Issue number6 31-6
StatePublished - Dec 2004


  • Apoptosis
  • Compensatory lung growth
  • Dog
  • Immunoblot
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Postnatal development and maturation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cell Biology


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