Circulating interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels are associated with aortic dimensions in genetic aortic conditions.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Biomarkers that reflect progression of dilatation of the aorta in patients with aortic conditions are needed as surrogate tools to assist in monitoring the condition in a non-invasive manner in combination with imaging procedures. This study aimed to investigate whether biomarkers are associated with aortic dimensions in patients enrolled in the Genetically-Triggered Thoracic Aortic Conditions (GenTAC) registry. METHODS:Plasma samples of 159 patients enrolled in the GenTAC registry were assessed for circulating biomarkers [interleukin-6 (IL-6), matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-1 (TIMP-1), tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-2 (TIMP-2) and transforming growth factor-?1 (TGF?1)]. Association of circulating biomarker levels with aortic dimensions was investigated. RESULTS:IL-6 showed significant positive correlations with aortic dimensions at each segment of the aorta, with the correlation increasing in more distal aortic regions (ascending aorta, R = 0.26, p = 0.004; proximal arch, R = 0.35, p<0.0001; transverse arch, R = 0.30, p = 0.0005; mid-descending thoracic aorta, R = 0.40, p<0.0001; thoracoabdominal aorta, R = 0.38, p<0.0001; suprarenal abdominal aorta, R = 0.42, p<0.0001; and infrarenal aorta, R = 0.43, p<0.0001). TIMP-1 showed a significant correlation albeit weaker than IL-6, and also showed increasing correlation towards the distal areas of the aorta. CONCLUSIONS:Circulating IL-6 and TIMP-1 were associated with aortic dimensions in patients with aortopathies enrolled in the GenTAC cohort.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Unicuspid aortic valve (UAV) is a rare disorder, often difficult to distinguish from bicuspid aortic valve (BAV). BAV and UAV share valve pathology such as the presence of a raphe, leaflet fusion, aortic stenosis, aortic regurgitation, and/or ascending aortic dilatation, but a comprehensive echocardiographic comparison of patients with UAV and BAV has not been previously performed. METHODS:We investigated UAV and BAV patients at an early stage of disease included in GenTAC, a national registry of genetically related aortic aneurysms and associated cardiac conditions. Clinical and echocardiographic data from the GenTAC Registry were compared between 17 patients with UAV and 17 matched-controls with BAV. RESULTS:Baseline characteristics including demographics, clinical findings including family history of BAV and aortic aneurysm/coarctation, and echocardiographic variables were similar between BAV and UAV patients; aortic stenosis was more common and more severe in patients with UAV. This was evidenced by higher mean and peak gradient, smaller aortic valve area, and more advanced valvular degeneration (all P < .05). There were no significant differences in aortic dimensions, with a similar pattern of enlargement of the ascending aorta. CONCLUSIONS:The similar baseline characteristics with more accelerated aortic valve degeneration and stenosis suggest that UAV represents an extreme in the spectrum of BAV syndromes. Therefore, it is reasonable to consider application of recommendations for the management of patients with BAV to those with the rarer UAV.
Project description:Atherosclerosis is a disease of large- and medium-sized arteries that is characterized by chronic vascular inflammation. While the role of Th1, Th2, and T-regulatory subsets in atherogenesis is established, the involvement of IL-17A-producing cells remains unclear.To investigate the role of the IL-17A/IL-17RA axis in atherosclerosis.We bred apolipoprotein-E-deficient (Apoe(-/-)) mice with IL-17A-deficient and IL-17 receptor A-deficient mice to generate Il17a(-/-)Apoe(-/-) and Il17ra(-/-)Apoe(-/-) mice. Western diet fed Il17a(-/-)Apoe(-/-) and Il17ra(-/-)Apoe(-/-) mice had smaller atherosclerotic plaques in the aortic arch and aortic roots, but showed little difference in plaque burden in the thoracoabdominal aorta in comparison with Apoe(-/-) controls. Flow cytometric analysis of Il17a(-/-)Apoe(-/-) and Il17ra(-/-)Apoe(-/-) aortas revealed that deficiency of IL-17A/IL-17RA preferentially reduced aortic arch, but not thoracoabdominal aortic T cell, neutrophil, and macrophage content in comparison with Apoe(-/-) aortic segments. In contrast to ubiquitous IL-17RA expression throughout the aorta, IL-17A was preferentially expressed within the aortic arch of WD-fed Apoe(-/-) mice. Deficiency of IL-17A or IL-17RA reduced aortic arch, but not thoracoabdominal aortic TNF? and CXCL2 expression. Aortic vascular IL-17RA supports monocyte adherence to explanted aortas in ex vivo adhesion assays. Short-term homing experiments revealed that the recruitment of adoptively transferred monocytes and neutrophils to the aortas of Il17ra(-/-)Apoe(-/-) mice is impaired in comparison with Apoe(-/-) recipients.The IL-17A/IL-17RA axis increases aortic arch inflammation during atherogenesis through the induction of aortic chemokines, and the acceleration of neutrophil and monocyte recruitment to this site.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:This study aimed to explore aortic morphology and the associations between morphological features and cardiovascular function in a population of patients with bicuspid aortic valve, while further assessing differences between patients with repaired coarctation, patients with unrepaired coarctation and patients without coarctation. METHODS:This is a single-centre retrospective study that included patients with available cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging data and native bicuspid aortic valve diagnosis (n = 525). A statistical shape analysis was performed on patients with a 3-dimensional magnetic imaging resonance (MRI) dataset (n = 108), deriving 3-dimensional aortic reconstructions and computing a mean aortic shape (template) for the whole population as well as for the 3 subgroups of interest (no coarctation, repaired coarctation and unrepaired coarctation). Shape deformations (modes) were computed and correlated with demographic variables, 2-dimensional MRI measurements and volumetric and functional data. RESULTS:Overall, the results showed that patients with coarctation tended towards a more Gothic arch architecture, with decreased ascending and increased descending aorta diameters, with the unrepaired-aortic coarctation subgroup exhibiting more ascending aorta dilation. Careful assessment of patients with repaired coarctation only revealed that a more Gothic arch, increased descending aorta dimensions and ascending aorta dilation were associated with reduced ejection fraction (P ≤ 0.04), increased end-diastolic volume (P ≤ 0.04) and increased ventricular mass (P ≤ 0.02), with arch morphology distinguishing patients with and without recoarctation (P = 0.05). CONCLUSIONS:A statistical shape modelling framework was applied to a bicuspid aortic valve population revealing nuanced differences in arch morphology and demonstrating that morphological features, not immediately described by conventional measurements, can indicate those shape phenotypes associated with compromised function and thus possibly warranting closer follow-up.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:Disturbed flow (DF) is well-known to induce endothelial dysfunction and synergistically with plasma dyslipidemia facilitate plaque formation. Little is known, however, about the synergistic impact of DF and dyslipidemia on endothelial biomechanics. Our goal was to determine the impact of DF on endothelial stiffness and evaluate the role of dyslipidemia/oxLDL (oxidized low-density lipoprotein) in this process. APPROACH AND RESULTS:Endothelial elastic modulus of intact mouse aortas ex vivo and of human aortic endothelial cells exposed to laminar flow or DF was measured using atomic force microscopy. Endothelial monolayer of the aortic arch is found to be significantly stiffer than the descending aorta (4.2+1.1 versus 2.5+0.2 kPa for aortic arch versus descending aorta) in mice maintained on low-fat diet. This effect is significantly exacerbated by short-term high-fat diet (8.7+2.5 versus 4.5+1.2 kPa for aortic arch versus descending aorta). Exposure of human aortic endothelial cells to DF in vitro resulted in 50% increase in oxLDL uptake and significant endothelial stiffening in the presence but not in the absence of oxLDL. DF also increased the expression of oxLDL receptor CD36 (cluster of differentiation 36), whereas downregulation of CD36 abrogated DF-induced endothelial oxLDL uptake and stiffening. Furthermore, genetic deficiency of CD36 abrogated endothelial stiffening in the aortic arch in vivo in mice fed either low-fat diet or high-fat diet. We also show that the loss of endothelial stiffening in CD36 knockout aortas is not mediated by the loss of CD36 in circulating cells. CONCLUSIONS:DF facilitates endothelial CD36-dependent uptake of oxidized lipids resulting in local increase of endothelial stiffness in proatherogenic areas of the aorta.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Persistent 5th aortic arch is a rare cardiac anomaly that is usually surgically corrected during infancy or early childhood if it is associated with coarctation of the aorta. Here, we report an adult with coarctation of the 5th aortic arch who was successfully treated by stent implantation. CASE SUMMARY:An asymptomatic 32-year-old woman presented with hypertension and a significant arm-leg difference in pressure. On suspicion of coarctation of the aorta, a chest computed tomography was performed, leading to a diagnosis of an interrupted 4th aortic arch with coarctation of a persistent 5th aortic arch. Percutaneous catheter intervention using a PALMAZ large stent dilated to 12 mm resulted in a minimal peak-to-peak pressure gradient. The patient was discharged home after a 2-day monitoring without hypertension and arm-leg blood pressure difference. She remained normotensive with a patent aortic arch on echocardiography performed 10 months after treatment. DISCUSSION:As for simple coarctation of the aorta, stent implantation was feasible and effective in an adult patient with coarctation of the 5th aortic arch.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Ascending aortic dimensions are slightly larger in young competitive athletes compared with sedentary controls, but rarely >40 mm. Whether this finding translates to aortic enlargement in older, former athletes is unknown. METHODS AND RESULTS:This cross-sectional study involved a sample of 206 former National Football League (NFL) athletes compared with 759 male subjects from the DHS-2 (Dallas Heart Study-2; mean age of 57.1 and 53.6 years, respectively, P<0.0001; body surface area of 2.4 and 2.1 m2, respectively, P<0.0001). Midascending aortic dimensions were obtained from computed tomographic scans performed as part of a NFL screening protocol or as part of the DHS. Compared with a population-based control group, former NFL athletes had significantly larger ascending aortic diameters (38±5 versus 34±4 mm; P<0.0001). A significantly higher proportion of former NFL athletes had an aorta of >40 mm (29.6% versus 8.6%; P<0.0001). After adjusting for age, race, body surface area, systolic blood pressure, history of hypertension, current smoking, diabetes mellitus, and lipid profile, the former NFL athletes still had significantly larger ascending aortas (P<0.0001). Former NFL athletes were twice as likely to have an aorta >40 mm after adjusting for the same parameters. CONCLUSIONS:Ascending aortic dimensions were significantly larger in a sample of former NFL athletes after adjusting for their size, age, race, and cardiac risk factors. Whether this translates to an increased risk is unknown and requires further evaluation.
Project description:Many different aortic arch variants have been documented before. Pseudo bovine arch is the most common variant of the aortic arch. Pseudo bovine arch with other factors such as stenosis and calcification impose great difficulties even for experienced cardiologists. Knowledge of anatomical variants is useful information for interventional cardiologist, radiologist, and thoracic surgeons. Left vertebral artery left internal mammary artery (LIMA) alterations have been published a few times before, but here we present a first case to our knowledge with LIMA arising from an aberrant arterial branch of the aorta in a patient with a pseudo bovine aortic arch anatomy. <Learning objective: Variations of the aortic arch are due to alteration in the development of branchial arch arteries during embryonic period. Learn about left internal mammary artery arising from an aberrant arterial branch of the aorta in a patient with a pseudo bovine aortic arch anatomy.>.
Project description:We sought to define age-related geometric changes of the aortic arch and determine their relationship to central aortic stiffness and left ventricular (LV) remodeling.The proximal aorta has been shown to thicken, enlarge in diameter, and lengthen with aging in humans. However, no systematic study has described age-related longitudinal and transversal remodeling of the aortic arch and their relationship with LV mass and remodeling.We studied 100 subjects (55 women, 45 men, average age 46 ± 16 years) free of overt cardiovascular disease using magnetic resonance imaging to determine aortic arch geometry (length, diameters, height, width, and curvature), aortic arch function (local aortic distensibility and arch pulse wave velocity [PWV]), and LV volumes and mass. Radial tonometry was used to calculate central blood pressure.Aortic diameters and arch length increased significantly with age. The ascending aorta length increased most, with age leading to aortic arch widening and decreased curvature. These geometric changes of the aortic arch were significantly related to decreased ascending aortic distensibility, increased aortic arch PWV (p < 0.001), and increased central blood pressures (p < 0.001). Increased ascending aortic diameter, lengthening, and decreased curvature of the aortic arch (unfolding) were all significantly associated with increased LV mass and concentric remodeling independently of age, sex, body size, and central blood pressure (p < 0.01).Age-related unfolding of the aortic arch is related to increased proximal aortic stiffness in individuals without cardiovascular disease and associated with increased LV mass and mass-to-volume ratio independent of age, body size, central pressure, and cardiovascular risk factors.
Project description:Aortic arch malformations are common congenital disorders that are frequently of unknown etiology. To gain insight into the factors that guide branchial aortic arch development, we examined the process by which these vessels assemble in wild type zebrafish embryos and in kurzschluss(tr12) (kus(tr12)) mutants. In wild type embryos, each branchial aortic arch first appears as an island of angioblasts in the lateral pharyngeal mesoderm, then elaborates by angiogenesis to connect to the lateral dorsal aorta and ventral aorta. In kus(tr12) mutants, angioblast formation and initial sprouting are normal, but aortic arches 5 and 6 fail to form a lumenized connection to the lateral dorsal aorta. Blood enters these blind-ending vessels from the ventral aorta, distending the arteries and precipitating fusion with an adjacent vein. This arteriovenous malformation (AVM), which shunts nearly all blood directly back to the heart, is not exclusively genetically programmed, as its formation correlates with blood flow and aortic arch enlargement. By positional cloning, we have identified a nonsense mutation in unc45a in kus(tr12) mutants. Our results are the first to ascribe a role for Unc45a, a putative myosin chaperone, in vertebrate development, and identify a novel mechanism by which an AVM can form.
Project description:Apolipoprotein E-null mice with a 129S6/SvEvTac strain background (129-apoE) develop atherosclerotic plaques faster in the aortic arch but slower in the aortic root than those with a C57BL/6J background (B6-apoE). The shape of the aortic arch also differs in the 2 strains.Because circulating plasma factors are the same at both locations, we tested the hypothesis that genetic factors affecting vascular geometry also affect the location and extent of atherosclerotic plaque development.Tests on the F2 progeny from a cross between 129-apoE-null and B6-apoE-null mice showed that the extent of atherosclerosis in the aortic arch is significantly correlated in males, but not in females, with the shape of arch curvature (r=0.34, P<0.0001) and weakly with the arch diameter (r=0.20, P=0.02). Quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis identified 2 significant peaks for aortic arch lesion size on chromosome 1 (105 Mb, LOD=5.0, and 163 Mb, LOD=6.8), and a suggestive QTL on chromosome 15 (96 Mb, LOD=4.7). A significant QTL for aortic root lesion size was on chromosome 9 (61 Mb, LOD=6.9), but it was distinct from the QTLs for arch lesion size. Remarkably, the QTLs for susceptibility to atherosclerosis in the arch overlapped with a significant QTL that affects curvature of the arch on chromosome 1 (121 Mb, LOD=5.6) and a suggestive QTL on chromosome 15 (76 Mb, LOD=3.5).The overlapping QTLs for curvature of the aortic arch and atherosclerosis support that the ontogeny of the aortic arch formation is a potential risk factor for atherosclerosis.