We have previously demonstrated significant upregulation of dopamine D2 (DAD2) receptor (DRD2) expression on tumor endothelial cells. The dopamine D2 receptors, upon activation, inhibit the proangiogenic actions of vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A, also known as vascular permeability factor). Interestingly, unlike tumor endothelial cells, normal endothelial cells exhibit very low to no expression of dopamine D2 receptors. Here, for the first time, we demonstrate that through paracrine signaling, VEGF-A can control the expression of dopamine D2 receptors on endothelial cells via Krüppel-like factor 11 (KLF11)-extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) 1/2 pathway. These results thus reveal a novel bidirectional communication between VEGF-A and DAD2 receptors.

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