The role of ubiquitin-proteasome system in the accelerated atherosclerotic progression of diabetic patients is unclear. We evaluated ubiquitin-proteasome activity in carotid plaques of asymptomatic diabetic and nondiabetic patients, as well as the effect of rosiglitazone, a peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)-γ activator, in diabetic plaques. Plaques were obtained from 46 type 2 diabetic and 30 nondiabetic patients undergoing carotid endarterectomy. Diabetic patients received 8 mg rosiglitazone (n = 23) or placebo (n = 23) for 4 months before scheduled endarterectomy. Plaques were analyzed for macrophages (CD68), T-cells (CD3), inflammatory cells (HLA-DR), ubiquitin, proteasome 20S activity, nuclear factor (NF)-κB, inhibitor of κB (IκB)-β, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, nitrotyrosine, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-9, and collagen content (immunohistochemistry and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay). Compared with nondiabetic plaques, diabetic plaques had more macrophages, T-cells, and HLA-DR cells (P <0.001); more ubiquitin, proteasome 20S activity (TNF-α), and NF-κB (P <0.001); and more markers of oxidative stress (nitrotyrosine and O 2- production) and MMP-9 (P <0.01), along with a lesser collagen content and IκB-β levels (P <0.001). Compared with placebo-treated plaques, rosiglitazone-treated diabetic plaques presented less inflammatory cells (P <0.01); less ubiquitin, proteasome 20S, TNF-α, and NF-κB (P <0.01); less nitrotyrosine and superoxide anion production (P <0.01); and greater collagen content (P <0.01), indicating a more stable plaque phenotype. Similar findings were obtained in circulating monocytes obtained from the two groups of diabetic patients and cultured in the presence or absence of rosiglitazone (7.0 μmol/l). Ubiquitin-proteasome over-activity is associated with enhanced inflammatory reaction and NF-κB expression in diabetic plaques. The inhibition of ubiquitin-proteasome activity in atherosclerotic lesions of diabetic patients by rosiglitazone is associated with morphological and compositional characteristics of a potential stable plaque phenotype, possibly by downregulating NF-κB-mediated inflammatory pathways.
|Number of pages||11|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2006|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism