Author(s): Zohlnhfer D, Klein CA, Richter T, Brandl R, Murr A,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Restenosis due to neointima formation is the major limitation of stent-supported balloon angioplasty. Despite abundant animal data, molecular mechanisms of neointima formation have been investigated on only a limited basis in patients. This study sought to establish a method for profiling gene expression in human in-stent neointima and to identify differentially expressed genes that may serve as novel therapeutic targets. METHODS AND RESULTS: We retrieved tissue specimens from patients with symptomatic in-stent restenosis using a novel helix cutter atherectomy device. cDNA samples prepared from neointima (n=10) and, as a control, from the media of normal arteries (n=14) were amplified using a novel polymerase chain reaction protocol and hybridized to cDNA arrays. Immunohistochemistry characterized the atherectomy material as neointima. cDNA arrays readily identified differentially expressed genes. Some of the differentially expressed genes complied with expected gene expression patterns of neointima, including downregulation of desmin and upregulation of thrombospondin-1, cyclooxygenase-1, and the 70-kDa heat shock protein B. Additionally, we discovered previously unknown gene expression patterns, such as downregulation of mammary-derived growth inhibitor and upregulation of FK506-binding protein 12 (FKBP12). Upregulation of FKBP12 was confirmed at the protein level in neointimal smooth muscle cells. CONCLUSIONS: Gene expression patterns of human neointima retrieved by helix-cutter atherectomy can be reliably analyzed by cDNA array technology. This technique can identify therapeutic targets in patients, as exemplified by the findings regarding FKBP12. FKBP12 is the receptor for Rapamycin (sirolimus), which in animal models reduced neointima formation. Our study thus yields a rationale for the use of Rapamycin to prevent restenosis in patients.
This article was published in Circulation
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Cardiology