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Anatomically specific reactive oxygen species production participates in Marfan syndrome aneurysm formation


Marfan syndrome (MFS) is a connective tissue disorder that results in aortic root aneurysm formation. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) seem to play a role in aortic wall remodelling in MFS, although the mechanism remains unknown. MFS Fbn1C1039G/+ mouse root/ascending (AS) and descending (DES) aortic samples were examined using DHE staining, lucigenin-enhanced chemiluminescence (LGCL), Verhoeff's elastin-Van Gieson staining (elastin breakdown) and in situ zymography for protease activity. Fbn1C1039G/+ AS- or DES-derived smooth muscle cells (SMC) were treated with anti-TGF-β antibody, angiotensin II (AngII), anti-TGF-β antibody + AngII, or isotype control. ROS were detected during early aneurysm formation in the Fbn1C1039G/+ AS aorta, but absent in normal-sized DES aorta. Fbn1C1039G/+ mice treated with the unspecific NADPH oxidase inhibitor, apocynin reduced AS aneurysm formation, with attenuated elastin fragmentation. In situ zymography revealed apocynin treatment decreased protease activity. In vitro SMC studies showed Fbn1C1039G/+ -derived AS SMC had increased NADPH activity compared to DES-derived SMC. AS SMC NADPH activity increased with AngII treatment and appeared TGF-β dependent. In conclusion, ROS play a role in MFS aneurysm development and correspond anatomically with aneurysmal aortic segments. ROS inhibition via apocynin treatment attenuates MFS aneurysm progression. AngII enhances ROS production in MFS AS SMCs and is likely TGF-β dependent.

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