Author(s): Kuzuya M, Nakamura K, Sasaki T, Cheng XW, Itohara S, , Kuzuya M, Nakamura K, Sasaki T, Cheng XW, Itohara S,
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: Although it has been reported that matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 is a major proteinase in atherosclerotic plaque lesions, there is no direct evidence of the role of MMP-2 in atherosclerotic lesion formation. In the present study we determined the role of MMP-2 in atherosclerosis plaque development using apolipoprotein E-deficient (apoE(-/-)) mice. METHODS AND RESULTS: To generate MMP-2-deficient, apoE-deficient mice (MMP-2(-/-):apoE(-/-)), MMP-2(-/-) mice were crossed with apoE(-/-) mice. After 8 weeks of feeding with a lipid-rich diet, morphological and biochemical studies of the aortic sinus and arch were conducted. A significant reduction of the atherosclerotic plaque in the aortic sinus and arch with the decrease in smooth muscle cell-positive area was observed in MMP-2(-/-):apoE(-/-) mice compared with that of MMP-2(+/+):apoE(-/-) mice. Macrophage- and collagen-positive areas were less in aortic sinus but not in aortic arch in MMP-2(-/-):apoE(-/-) mice. There was no difference of MMP-9 mRNA expression in the plaque lesion between the 2 genotypes. A much lower level of mRNA expression of TIMP-1 and TIMP-2 was detected in the atherosclerotic plaque lesions of MMP-2(-/-):apoE(-/-) mice than in those of MMP-2(+/+):apoE(-/-) mice. CONCLUSIONS: MMP-2 contributes to the development of atherosclerosis in apoE(-/-) mice.
This article was published in Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol
and referenced in Cardiovascular Pharmacology: Open Access