Angiotensin II amplifies macrophage-driven atherosclerosis

Ayabe Nobuhiko, Eisuke Suganuma, Vladimir R. Babaev, Agnes Fogo, Larry L. Swift, MacRae F. Linton, Sergio Fazio, Iekuni Ichikawa, Valentina Kon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Objective - We evaluated the role of angiotensin II (AII) in a marrow-derived macrophage-driven model of atherosclerosis. Methods and Results - Eight-week-old C57BL/6 wild-type mice were reconstituted with bone marrow harvested from apolipoprotein E-deficient (apoE-/- → apoE+/+) or wild-type for apoE gene (apoE+/+ → apoE+/+) mice. At 20 weeks, mice were exposed to either AII (1000 ng/kg per minute subcutaneously) or saline for 2 weeks. Animals did not differ in body weight, blood pressure, cholesterol/triglycerides, or peripheral blood monocyte counts. ApoE-/- → apoE+/+ mice exposed to AII had 3-fold greater atherosclerotic area than saline-treated apoE-/- → apoE+/+ mice. By contrast, AII did not affect atherosclerosis in apoE+/+ → apoE+/+ mice. Macrophage-positive areas were increased by AII in mice reconstituted with either apoE-deficient or apoE-competent marrow. AII also significantly increased fragmentation of elastin laminae in both apoE-/- → apoE+/+ and apoE+/+ → apoE+/+ mice. In vitro, AII caused greater increase in monocyte chemoattractant protein-1-stimulated migration of macrophages harvested from AII-infused versus saline-infused mice. Conclusions - The current studies reveal that AII has both initiating and sustaining proatherogenic effects. By promoting macrophage migration into the vascular intima, AII is pivotal in initiating atherosclerosis; by promoting elastin breaks, a novel mechanism implicated in migration and proliferation of smooth muscle cells, AII may be pivotal in subsequent development and expansion of atherosclerotic lesion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2143-2148
Number of pages6
JournalArteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Angiotensin II
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Macrophage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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