OBJECTIVEFocal adhesion kinase is implicated in the regulation of cell adhesion, migration, survival, and cell-cycle progression. However, the functions of focal adhesion kinase in endothelial cell (EC) in vivo remain unclear. This study aims to examine the role of FAK in EC function and angiogenesis in vivo by transgenic mice approach.METHODWe generated transgenic mice which overexpressed chicken FAK in vascular endothelial cell under the control of the Tie-2 promoter and enhancer. FAK transgene was detected by RT-PCR, immunoprecipitation, and Western blot. The effect of FAK overexpression on angiogenesis was determined using skin wound healing and ischemia skeleton muscle models.RESULTSExpression of FAK transgene was detected in all vessel-rich tissues. Expression of FAK protein was verified by antibody specific for the exogenous chicken FAK in lung homogenates and isolated EC. In the wound-induced angiogenesis model, the number of vessels in the granulation tissue of healing wound was significantly increased in the transgenic mouse compared to that of wild-type control mice. Similarly, in the ischemia skeleton muscle model, the density of capillaries was significantly increased in the transgenic mouse.CONCLUSIONThese results indicate that FAK may play an important role in the promotion of angiogenesis in vivo.