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Publications (3)13.29 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: White Dutch patients with symptomatic PAD were recruited at the surgical clinics of a university hospital and two affiliated teaching hospitals. Ankle-brachial pressure index (ABPI) measurement was used to objectify the presence of atherosclerotic disease of lower limb arteries. An ABPI less than 0.9 was regarded as pathognomonic. To identify additional cardiovascular and cerebrovascular comorbidities, medical charts were reviewed, and attending physicians were consulted. Also, the presence/absence of abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) was ascertained in all patients by means of duplex ultrasonography, computed tomographic angiography, or both. AAA was defined as an aorta with an anteroposterior diameter greater than 30 mm.
    Journal of Vascular Surgery 09/2006; 44(2):326-32. DOI:10.1016/j.jvs.2006.04.035
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    ABSTRACT: Serum C-reactive protein (CRP) has proven to be an independent marker of the extent of atherosclerosis in patients with coronary, cerebrovascular, and peripheral arterial disease. In this prospective observational study, we wanted to assess the relationship between serum CRP and extent of disease transversely and longitudinally in time, as well as future cardiovascular complications in patients with peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Hypothesizing that CRP not only is a marker of but also actively participates in atherogenesis, we explored the possibility of CRP production by femoral atherosclerotic plaques. Serum CRP was measured as highly sensitive (hsCRP) in 387 patients with PAD attending the vascular clinic of a university and 2 affiliated teaching hospitals. Serum hsCRP was related to the ankle-brachial pressure index (ABPI) as an indication of severity of disease at inclusion and at 12 months' follow-up and to future events (death and coronary, cerebral, and peripheral arterial events). In femoral plaques, the production of CRP was analyzed with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, and CRP plaque localization was assessed with immunostaining on serial tissue sections with antibodies toward CRP, smooth muscle cells, T cells, and macrophages. The hsCRP (average +/- SD) was 3.26 +/- 2.41 mg/L. Serum hsCRP showed a correlation with baseline and 12-month follow-up ABPI (Spearman rank correlation; P < .05 for both correlations). When the patients were divided into three equally sized groups according to baseline serum hsCRP, the ABPI at baseline and at 12 months decreased significantly from the low- to the high-hsCRP group (baseline ABPI: 0.70, 0.65, and 0.57, P < .01; 12-month follow-up ABPI: 0.78, 0.70, and 0.65, P < .01). These associations persisted after correction for conventional risk factors. Furthermore, serum hsCRP was related to the combined end point "death and/or any cardiovascular event" (log-rank test; P = .04) during a median 24-month follow-up period. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis showed CRP production in 4 of 14 femoral plaques. CRP was detected in all femoral plaques, but not in healthy brachial arteries. Immunoreactivity for CRP was observed in smooth muscle cells, macrophages, and T cells. Serum hsCRP was related to the severity of PAD, showing a relation to future hemodynamic function and cardiovascular events in PAD patients. In addition to coronary plaques, aneurysmal aortas, and failed venous coronary bypasses, femoral plaques also produce CRP, thus illustrating that the production of CRP may represent a universal response to vascular injury and suggesting that vascular CRP may contribute to plaque development.
    Journal of Vascular Surgery 08/2005; 42(2):243-51. DOI:10.1016/j.jvs.2005.03.060
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    ABSTRACT: In this study, differential protein expression was assessed during human atherosclerotic plaque progression. A multifaceted approach was used in which differential protein expression was studied by two-dimensional (2D) gel electrophoresis and validated in individual patients using western blotting and immunohistochemistry. 2D profiles of whole-mount advanced stable lesions were compared to those of plaques containing a thrombus. Mass spectrometry analysis identified vinexin-beta and alpha1-antitrypsin (AAT) in the same spot that was differentially expressed in plaques with a thrombus. Immunohistochemistry and western blotting showed limited expression of both vinexin-beta and AAT in early lesions, whereas high expression of both proteins was found in advanced lesions. Differential expression of vinexin-beta in lesions with a thrombus compared to stable plaques could not be confirmed, indicating the importance of validation of proteomic analysis. For AAT, western blotting of 2D gels revealed expression of six isoforms in advanced plaques, one of which was confirmed to be solely expressed in thrombus-containing plaques. In conclusion, vinexin-beta is expressed in advanced human atherosclerotic plaques, but differential expression of this protein in lesions with a thrombus versus stable plaques could not be confirmed. However, this analysis revealed expression of six isoforms of AAT in advanced plaques, one of which was uniquely expressed in thrombus-containing plaques.
    The Journal of Pathology 05/2005; 206(1):39-45. DOI:10.1002/path.1749