: Background: Marfan syndrome (MFS) is a genetic disease, characterized by thoracic aortic aneurysm (TAA), which treatment is to date purely surgical. Understanding of novel molecular targets is mandatory to unveil effective pharmacological approaches. Cyclophilin A (CyPA) and its receptor EMMPRIN are associated with several cardiovascular diseases, including abdominal aortic aneurysm. Here, we envisioned the contribution of CyPA/EMMPRIN axis in MFS-related TAA.
METHODS: We obtained thoracic aortic samples from healthy controls (HC) and MFS patients' aortas and then isolated vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) from the aortic wall.
RESULTS: our findings revealed that MFS aortic tissue samples isolated from the dilated zone of aorta showed higher expression levels of EMMPRIN vs. MFS non-dilated aorta and HC. Interestingly, angiotensin II significantly stimulated CyPA secretion in MFS-derived VSMC (MFS-VSMC). CyPA treatment on MFS-VSMC led to increased levels of EMMPRIN and other MFS-associated pro-fibrotic mediators, such as TGF-β1 and collagen I. These molecules were downregulated by in vitro treatment with CyPA inhibitor MM284. Our results suggest that CyPA/EMMPRIN axis is involved in MFS-related TAA development, since EMMPRIN is upregulated in the dilated zone of MFS patients' TAA and the inhibition of its ligand, CyPA, downregulated EMMPRIN and MFS-related markers in MFS-VSMC.
CONCLUSIONS: these insights suggest both a novel detrimental role for CyPA/EMMPRIN axis and its inhibition as a potential therapeutic strategy for MFS-related TAA treatment.
- Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic/metabolism
- Case-Control Studies
- Cyclophilin A/metabolism
- Marfan Syndrome/physiopathology
- Transforming Growth Factor beta1/metabolism