|Detection of DLL4 in bEnd.3 Mouse Cell Line by Flow Cytometry. bEnd.3 mouse endothelioma cell line was stained with Goat Anti-Mouse DLL4 Alexa Fluor® 488‑conjugated Antigen Affinity-purified Polyclonal Antibody (Catalog # FAB1389G, filled histogram) or isotype control antibody (Catalog # IC108G, open histogram). View our protocol for Staining Membrane-associated Proteins.|
Delta-like protein 4 (DLL4) is a type I membrane protein belonging to the Delta/Serrate/Lag2 (DSL) family of Notch ligands (1). Notch signaling is an evolutionarily conserved pathway that controls cell fate and is required in multiple developmental processes including vascular development, hematopoiesis, somatogenesis, myogenesis, and neurogenesis (2 - 4). Dysregulation in the Notch pathway is associated with various human diseases. In mammals, four Notch homologs (Notch 1 to 4) and five ligands (DLL 1, 3 and 4, Jagged 1 and 2) have been identified. Notch ligands are transmembrane proteins with a DSL motif necessary for Notch binding, tandem EGF repeats, a transmembrane region and a short intracellular domain (ICD). Notch ligands are categorized into two subfamilies based on the presence of an extracellular cysteine-rich domain and insertions that interrupt some EGF repeats in the Jagged but not the Delta ligand family. Interactions of Notch receptors with their ligands results in reciprocal regulated intramembrane proteolysis (RIP) (4). RIP is a mechanism for transmembrane signal transduction that involves the sequential processing by a disintegrin metalloprotease (ADAM) and then by presenilin/ gamma secretase, resulting in shedding of the extracellular domains and the generation of the soluble ICD signaling fragments, respectively. The Notch ICD translocates to the nucleus and interacts with transcriptional coactivators, resulting in the transcription of target genes. The ICDs of the Notch ligands have also been shown to translocate to the nucleus where they may have a signaling function (5, 6). DLL4 is expressed highly and selectively within the arterial endothelium and has been shown to function as a ligand for Notch 1 and Notch 4. Human and mouse DLL4 share 86% amino acid sequence identity (1).