Detection of osteopontin in calcified human aortic valves.
ABSTRACT Cardiac valve calcification often results in obstruction of blood flow, which eventually leads to valve replacement. The molecular mechanisms resulting in valve calcification are unknown. Collagen and specific bone matrix proteins are thought to provide the framework for ectopic tissue calcification. This investigation was performed to determine whether the bone matrix protein osteopontin was present in calcified human aortic valves. Proteins extracted from human aortic valve tissue were subjected to polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis followed by Western blotting, using polyclonal antibodies directed against osteopontin. Fresh frozen tissue sections were also screened for osteopontin and macrophages using immunohistochemical techniques. Osteopontin was present in both heavily and minimally calcified aortic valves and absent in noncalcified purely regurgitant or normal aortic valves by both radioimmunoassay (n = 16) and immunohistochemical techniques (n = 8). Osteopontin colocalized with valvular calcific deposits, and macrophages were identified in the vicinity of osteopontin. These results, in addition to showing that osteopontin is present in calcified human aortic valves, suggest that osteopontin is a regulatory protein in pathological calcification. Identification of the cells producing osteopontin in abnormal cardiac valves and of proximate stimuli for its secretion may lead to novel therapeutic strategies to prevent and/or reverse calcific valve disease.
Article: Ex vivo evidence for the contribution of hemodynamic shear stress abnormalities to the early pathogenesis of calcific bicuspid aortic valve disease.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The bicuspid aortic valve (BAV) is the most common congenital cardiac anomaly and is frequently associated with calcific aortic valve disease (CAVD). The most prevalent type-I morphology, which results from left-/right-coronary cusp fusion, generates different hemodynamics than a tricuspid aortic valve (TAV). While valvular calcification has been linked to genetic and atherogenic predispositions, hemodynamic abnormalities are increasingly pointed as potential pathogenic contributors. In particular, the wall shear stress (WSS) produced by blood flow on the leaflets regulates homeostasis in the TAV. In contrast, WSS alterations cause valve dysfunction and disease. While such observations support the existence of synergies between valvular hemodynamics and biology, the role played by BAV WSS in valvular calcification remains unknown. The objective of this study was to isolate the acute effects of native BAV WSS abnormalities on CAVD pathogenesis. Porcine aortic valve leaflets were subjected ex vivo to the native WSS experienced by TAV and type-I BAV leaflets for 48 hours. Immunostaining, immunoblotting and zymography were performed to characterize endothelial activation, pro-inflammatory paracrine signaling, extracellular matrix remodeling and markers involved in valvular interstitial cell activation and osteogenesis. While TAV and non-coronary BAV leaflet WSS essentially maintained valvular homeostasis, fused BAV leaflet WSS promoted fibrosa endothelial activation, paracrine signaling (2.4-fold and 3.7-fold increase in BMP-4 and TGF-β1, respectively, relative to fresh controls), catabolic enzyme secretion (6.3-fold, 16.8-fold, 11.7-fold, 16.7-fold and 5.5-fold increase in MMP-2, MMP-9, cathepsin L, cathepsin S and TIMP-2, respectively) and activity (1.7-fold and 2.4-fold increase in MMP-2 and MMP-9 activity, respectively), and bone matrix synthesis (5-fold increase in osteocalcin). In contrast, BAV WSS did not significantly affect α-SMA and Runx2 expressions and TIMP/MMP ratio. This study demonstrates the key role played by BAV hemodynamic abnormalities in CAVD pathogenesis and suggests the dependence of BAV vulnerability to calcification on the local degree of WSS abnormality.PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(10):e48843. · 4.09 Impact Factor
Article: Assessment of valvular calcification and inflammation by positron emission tomography in patients with aortic stenosis.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The pathophysiology of aortic stenosis is incompletely understood, and the relative contributions of valvular calcification and inflammation to disease progression are unknown. Patients with aortic sclerosis and mild, moderate, and severe stenosis were compared prospectively with age- and sex-matched control subjects. Aortic valve severity was determined by echocardiography. Calcification and inflammation in the aortic valve were assessed by 18F-sodium fluoride (18F-NaF) and 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG) uptake with the use of positron emission tomography. One hundred twenty-one subjects (20 controls; 20 aortic sclerosis; 25 mild, 33 moderate, and 23 severe aortic stenosis) were administered both 18F-NaF and 18F-FDG. Quantification of tracer uptake within the valve demonstrated excellent interobserver repeatability with no fixed or proportional biases and limits of agreement of ±0.21 (18F-NaF) and ±0.13 (18F-FDG) for maximum tissue-to-background ratios. Activity of both tracers was higher in patients with aortic stenosis than in control subjects (18F-NaF: 2.87±0.82 versus 1.55±0.17; 18F-FDG: 1.58±0.21 versus 1.30±0.13; both P<0.001). 18F-NaF uptake displayed a progressive rise with valve severity (r(2)=0.540, P<0.001), with a more modest increase observed for 18F-FDG (r(2)=0.218, P<0.001). Among patients with aortic stenosis, 91% had increased 18F-NaF uptake (>1.97), and 35% had increased 18F-FDG uptake (>1.63). A weak correlation between the activities of these tracers was observed (r(2)=0.174, P<0.001). Positron emission tomography is a novel, feasible, and repeatable approach to the evaluation of valvular calcification and inflammation in patients with aortic stenosis. The frequency and magnitude of increased tracer activity correlate with disease severity and are strongest for 18F-NaF. http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01358513.Circulation 11/2011; 125(1):76-86. · 14.74 Impact Factor
Article: Dephosphorylation of circulating human osteopontin correlates with severe valvular calcification in patients with calcific aortic valve disease.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Calcific Aortic Valve Disease (CAVD) is an active pathological process leading to biomineralization of the aortic cusps. We characterized circulating and tissue Osteopontin (OPN) as a biomarker for CAVD. Here we investigate the post-translational modifications of circulating OPN and correlate the phosphorylation status with the ability to prevent calcification. Circulating OPN levels were estimated in CAVD patients (n = 51) and controls (n = 56). In a subgroup of 27 subjects, OPN was purified and the phosphorylation status analyzed. Plasma OPN levels were significantly elevated in CAVD patients as compared to the controls and correlates with the aortic valve calcium score. Our study demonstrates that phospho-threonine levels of OPN purified from controls were higher when compared to CAVD subjects, whereas phospho-serine and phospho-tyrosine levels were comparable between the two groups. The dephosphorylation of circulating OPN correlates with severe valvular calcification in patients with CAVD.Biomarkers 12/2011; 17(2):111-8. · 2.21 Impact Factor