Abstract 17025: Dimethylarginine Dimethylaminohydrolase-1 Slows Progression of Fibrocalcific Aortic Valve Disease
Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) is an endogenous inhibitor of nitric oxide synthases (NOS), and is degraded primarily by dimethylarginine dimethylaminohydrolase-1 (DDAH1). While ADMA is elevated in patients with fibrocalcific aortic valve stenosis (FCAVD), is it unknown whether tissue levels of DDAH1 are altered in FCAVD, and whether systemic elevations in ADMA levels accelerate initiation and/or progression of FCAVD. In the present study, we measured expression of DDAH1 in normal and stenotic human aortic valves, and tested the hypothesis that increases in ADMA worsen hypertension and endothelial dysfunction and accelerate the initiation and progression of FCAVD in hypercholesterolemic mice. In tissue from humans with FCAVD, expression of DDAH1 was significantly increased compared to normal valve tissue (normal = 1.0 ± 0.1, FCAVD = 1.3 ± 0.1, ⋔⋔Ct method; p < 0.05). To experimentally alter DDAH1 levels, we used low density lipoprotein receptor-deficient, apolipoprotein B100-only (LA) mice that were either wild-type (D+/+) or heterozygous (D+/-) for DDAH1. Blood pressure (tail cuff), aortic endothelial function (isolated organ bath), and aortic valve function (echocardiography), were measured at 3 and 6 month time points in these mice. Compared to LA-D+/+ mice, systolic arterial pressure was significantly increased in LA-D+/- mice at both 3 month (121±4 mmHg and 144±4 mmHg) and 6 months (138±6 mmHg and 148±4 mmHg). Aortic endothelial function progressively declined with prolonged hypercholesterolemia, but maximum relaxation to acetylcholine did not differ between LA-D+/+ and LA-D+/- mice at 3 or 6 months. While aortic valve function was similar between LA-D+/+ and LA-D+/- mice at 3 months (peak transvalvular velocity: 1.98±0.07 m/sec versus 1.94±0.06 m/s, respectively), aortic valve function was significantly worse in LA-D+/- (2.41±0.11 m/sec) compared to LA-D+/+ mice (2.20±0.09 m/sec) at 6 months (p < 0.05). In conclusion, our data support a working model in which increases in valvular DDAH1 levels protect against progression of FCAVD. Importantly, loss of DDAH1 in mice does not alter aortic valve function during early stages of FCAVD, but accelerates progression of FCAVD independently of changes in endothelial function.
- © 2011 by American Heart Association, Inc.