Dimethylarginine Dimethylaminohydrolase Overexpression Ameliorates Atherosclerosis in Apolipoprotein E-Deficient Mice by Lowering Asymmetric Dimethylarginine

Department of Nephrology and Hypertension, Friedrich-Alexander-University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany.
American Journal Of Pathology (Impact Factor: 4.59). 03/2010; 176(5):2559-70. DOI: 10.2353/ajpath.2010.090614
Source: PubMed


Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA), an endogenous inhibitor of nitric oxide synthase, is increasingly recognized as a novel biomarker in cardiovascular disease. To date, it remains unclear whether elevated ADMA levels are merely associated with cardiovascular risk or whether this molecule is of functional relevance in the pathogenesis of atherosclerotic vascular disease. To clarify this issue, we crossed dimethylarginine dimethylaminohydrolase (DDAH) transgenic mice that overexpress the human isoform 1 of the ADMA degrading enzyme DDAH into ApoE-deficient mice to generate ApoE(-/-)/hDDAH1(+/-) mice. In these mice, as well as ApoE(-/-) wild-type littermates, atherosclerosis within the aorta as well as vascular function of aortic ring preparations was assessed. We report here that overexpression of hDDAH1 reduces plaque formation in ApoE(-/-) mice by lowering ADMA. The extent of atherosclerosis closely correlated with plasma ADMA levels in male but not female mice fed either a standard rodent chow or an atherogenic diet. Functional analysis of aortic ring preparations revealed improved endothelial function in mice overexpressing hDDAH1. Our findings provide proof-of-principle that ADMA plays a causal role as a culprit molecule in atherosclerosis and support recent evidence indicating a functional relevance of DDAH enzymes in genetic mouse models. Together, these results demonstrate that pharmacological interventions targeting the ADMA/DDAH pathway may represent a novel approach in the prevention and management of cardiovascular diseases.

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    • "Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) – an endogenous inhibitor of nitric oxide (NO) formation – has been implicated in atherogenesis [1,2]. Nevertheless, despite a bulk of evidence linking ADMA to subclinical carotid atherosclerosis [3-5] and adverse cardiovascular (CV) events [6-10], there are inconsistent reports on the association between ADMA and angiographic coronary artery disease (CAD). "
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    ABSTRACT: Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA), an endogenous nitric oxide synthesis inhibitor, and insulin resistance (IR) have been implicated in atherogenesis. Our aim was to estimate relations between ADMA, the magnitude of IR and angiographic indices of extent and severity of coronary atherosclerosis in non-diabetic men with stable coronary artery disease (CAD). We studied 151 non-diabetic men (mean age 57 +/- 11 years) with stable angina, obstructive CAD (at least 1 luminal diameter stenosis of >=70% in major coronary segments) and without heart failure, and 34 age-matched controls free of >=50% coronary narrowings. The following CAD indices were computed: the number of major epicardial vessels with >=70% stenosis, Sullivan extent score representing a proportion of the visible coronary tree with vessel wall irregularities, and Gensini score which reflects both CAD severity and extent, yet assigning a heavier weight to proximal segments and to the more severe narrowings by a non-linear point system. An estimate of IR was derived by homeostasis model assessment (HOMA-IR) from fasting insulin and glucose. Among the CAD patients, the proportions of subjects with 1-vessel, 2- vessel and 3-vessel CAD were 26%, 25% and 49%, respectively. ADMA levels were higher in patients with obstructive CAD compared to the controls (0.51 +/- 0.10 vs. 0.46 +/- 0.09 mumol/L [SD], P = 0.01), whereas HOMA-IR was similar (median, 3.2 [interquartile range: 2.4--4.9] vs. 2.9 [2.3--4.7], P = 0.2). Within the CAD group, ADMA increased across ascending quartiles of Sullivan score (Spearman's rho = 0.23, P = 0.004), but not with Gensini score (rho = 0.12, P = 0.15) or the number of vessels involved (rho = 0.08, P = 0.3). ADMA correlated to log-transformed Sullivan score (r = 0.21, P = 0.008), which was only slightly attenuated upon multivariate adjustment (beta = 0.19 +/- 0.08 [SEM], P = 0.015). HOMA-IR did not differ according to any measure of angiographic CAD (P >= 0.2). ADMA and log(HOMA-IR) were mutually unrelated (r = 0.07, P = 0.4). ADMA is associated with diffuse but not focal coronary atherosclerosis in non-diabetic men with stable CAD irrespectively of the degree of IR. The independent relationship between ADMA and coronary atherosclerotic burden may contribute to the well-recognized prognostic effect of ADMA in CAD.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2013 · Cardiovascular Diabetology
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    • "Thum and co-workers demonstrated that ADMA might suppress the differentiation and mobilization of endothelial progenitor cells in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) [48]. Overexpression of DDAH-1 in apolipoprotein E-deficient mice reduced plaque formation in the aorta and improved endothelial function as assessed by endothelium-dependent vasodilatation [49]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA), an endogenous nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor, is known as mediator of endothelial cell dysfunction and atherosclerosis. Circulating ADMA levels are correlated with cardiovascular risk factors such as hypercholesterolemia, arterial hypertension, diabetes mellitus, hyperhomocysteinemia, age and smoking. Accordingly, clinical studies found evidence that increased ADMA levels are associated with a higher risk of cerebrovascular events. After the acute event of ischemic stroke, levels of ADMA and its analog symmetric dimethylarginine (SDMA) are elevated through augmentation of protein methylation and oxidative stress. Furthermore, cleavage of ADMA through dimethylarginine dimethylaminohydrolases (DDAHs) is reduced. This increase of dimethylarginines might be predictive for adverse clinical outcome. However, the definite role of ADMA after acute ischemic stroke still needs to be clarified. On the one hand, ADMA might contribute to brain injury by reduction of cerebral blood flow. On the other hand, ADMA might be involved in NOS-induced oxidative stress and excitotoxic neuronal death. In the present review, we highlight the current knowledge from clinical and experimental studies on ADMA and its role for stroke risk and ischemic brain injury in the hyperacute stage after stroke. Finally, further studies are warranted to unravel the relevance of the close association of dimethylarginines with stroke.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2012 · International Journal of Molecular Sciences
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    ABSTRACT: Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) is a potent endogenous inhibitor of nitric oxide (NO) synthase. An increased synthesis and/or a reduced catabolism of ADMA might contribute to the onset and progression of thrombosis. The present study was designed to evaluate the effect of ADMA on fibrinolytic factors in endothelial cells, and to investigate the cellular mechanisms. Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) were treated with different concentrations of ADMA for various periods; Then HUVECs were preincubated with NO precursor (L-arginine), MAPK inhibitors, or NF-κB inhibitor (PDTC) before ADMA treatment to repeat the experiment. Protein levels of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), and NF-κB activity were measured by ELISA; mRNA levels of tPA and PAI-1 were assayed by qRT-PCR; The activation of MAPK was characterized by western blot analysis. (1) ADMA decreased tPA antigen levels in time- and concentration-dependent manners, with the maximum effect of 30 μmol/L ADMA for 48h (control 109.01 ± 4.15 ng/ml vs ADMA 86.76 ± 5.95 ng/ml, p<0.01); (2) 30 μmol/L ADMA elevated antigen levels of PAI-1 in a time-dependent manner, with the maximum effect of 30 μmol/L ADMA for 48 h (control 2721.12 ± 278.02 ng/ml vs. ADMA 3435.78 ± 22.33ng/ml, p<0.05); (3) ADMA reduced tPA mRNA levels and increased PAI-1 mRNA levels; (4) L-arginine, SB203580 (p38 MAPK inhibitor) and PDTC attenuated the effects of ADMA on tPA and PAI-1 significantly. (5) ADMA induced a rapid phosphorylation of p38 MAPK, and stimulated NF-κB activity greatly. ADMA may accelerate thrombosis development by impairing fibrinolytic activity in vascular via inhibiting nitric oxide production and then activating its downstream p38 MAPK and NF-κB pathways.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2011 · Thrombosis Research
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