Cysteine-rich protein 2 deficiency attenuates angiotensin II-induced abdominal aortic aneurysm formation in mice

Chung Huang Chen, Hua Hui Ho, Wei Cheng Jiang, Wai Sam Ao-Ieong, Jane Wang, Alexander N. Orekhov, Igor A. Sobenin, Matthew D. Layne, Shaw Fang Yet*


研究成果: Article同行評審

1 引文 斯高帕斯(Scopus)


Background: Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a relatively common and often fatal condition. A major histopathological hallmark of AAA is the severe degeneration of aortic media with loss of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs), which are the main source of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. VSMCs and ECM homeostasis are essential in maintaining structural integrity of the aorta. Cysteine-rich protein 2 (CRP2) is a VSMC-expressed protein; however, the role of CRP2 in AAA formation is unclear. Methods: To investigate the function of CRP2 in AAA formation, mice deficient in Apoe (Apoe−/−) or both CRP2 (gene name Csrp2) and Apoe (Csrp2−/−Apoe−/−) were subjected to an angiotensin II (Ang II) infusion model of AAA formation. Aortas were harvested at different time points and histological analysis was performed. Primary VSMCs were generated from Apoe−/− and Csrp2−/−Apoe−/− mouse aortas for in vitro mechanistic studies. Results: Loss of CRP2 attenuated Ang II-induced AAA incidence and severity, accompanied by preserved smooth muscle α-actin expression and reduced elastin degradation, matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP2) activity, deposition of collagen, particularly collagen III (Col III), aortic tensile strength, and blood pressure. CRP2 deficiency decreased the baseline MMP2 and Col III expression in VSMCs and mitigated Ang II-induced increases of MMP2 and Col III via blunting Erk1/2 signaling. Rescue experiments were performed by reintroducing CRP2 into Csrp2−/−Apoe−/− VSMCs restored Ang II-induced Erk1/2 activation, MMP2 expression and activity, and Col III levels. Conclusions: Our results indicate that in response to Ang II stimulation, CRP2 deficiency maintains aortic VSMC density, ECM homeostasis, and structural integrity through Erk1/2–Col III and MMP2 axis and reduces AAA formation. Thus, targeting CRP2 provides a potential therapeutic strategy for AAA.

期刊Journal of Biomedical Science
出版狀態Published - 12月 2022


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