Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Major Reduction In Cardiovascular Disease Seen In Mice Lacking CD44 Gene

Date:
October 2, 2001
Source:
Wistar Institute
Summary:
In a new study, when a strain of mice prone to atherosclerosis - cardiovascular disease - were specially bred to lack a gene called CD44, scientists saw reductions of up to 70 percent in the type of damage to blood-vessel walls associated with heart attacks and stroke. The reduction in disease is one of the greatest effects linked to a single gene yet reported in atherosclerosis. The significance of the observation is further underscored by the fact that CD44 represents a promising target for potential therapies.

PHILADELPHIA - In a new study, when a strain of mice prone to atherosclerosis - cardiovascular disease - were specially bred to lack a gene called CD44, scientists saw reductions of up to 70 percent in the type of damage to blood-vessel walls associated with heart attacks and stroke. The reduction in disease is one of the greatest effects linked to a single gene yet reported in atherosclerosis. The significance of the observation is further underscored by the fact that CD44 represents a promising target for potential therapies.

Related Articles


Scientists know that the development of atherosclerosis involves chronic inflammation of the vessel walls, and previous studies had implicated CD44 in other inflammatory processes. For this reason, the researcher team, led by investigators at The Wistar Institute, sought to assess cardiovascular disease in mice without the CD44 gene. Their experiments showed that the CD44 molecule plays a central role in attracting to the vessel walls the immune-system cells that drive the inflammatory process associated with atherosclerosis.

The team's findings, published in the October issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, suggest that drugs that moderate CD44 activity could contribute significantly to the treatment of atherosclerosis, most likely in combination with existing therapies.

"In mice lacking the CD44 gene, we saw reductions in atherosclerotic damage to the blood vessels that were dramatic," says immunologist Ellen Puré, Ph.D., a professor at The Wistar Institute and senior author on the study. "It suggests that if we can develop drugs to interfere with CD44 or, perhaps, selected molecules with which it interacts, we may be able to make a real contribution to lowering the likelihood of heart attack and stroke in at-risk individuals."

One of the advantages of any therapies that might target CD44, Puré explains, is that, unlike other immune-system molecules involved in chronic inflammation, CD44 does not appear to be required for some of the most important normal white blood cell functions, immune surveillance and acute response to infection.

The lead author on the Journal of Clinical Investigation study is Carolyn A. Cuff, Ph.D., formerly a member of Puré's laboratory team, now at Bristol-Myers Squibb in Hopewell, NJ. The other Wistar co-authors are Ijeoma Azonobi, Sam Chun, and Christine Yeh. Co-authors at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine are Devashish Kothapalli, Ph.D., Yuanming Zhang, Richard Belkin, Anthony Secreto, Richard K. Assoian, Ph.D., professor of pharmacology, and Daniel J. Rader, M.D., associate professor of medicine. In addition to her affiliation with The Wistar Institute, Puré is also a member of The Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in New York, NY.

Funding for the research was provided by the National Institutes of Health and the American Heart Association.

The Wistar Institute is an independent nonprofit research institution dedicated to discovering the causes and cures for major diseases, including cancer and AIDS. The Institute is a National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center - one of the nation's first, funded continuously since 1968, and one of only 10 focused on basic research. Founded in 1892, Wistar was the first independent institution devoted to medical research and training in the nation. Since the Institute's inception, Wistar scientists have helped to improve world health through the development of vaccines against rabies, rubella, rotavirus, and cytomegalovirus and the identification of genes associated with breast, lung, prostate and other cancers.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wistar Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Wistar Institute. "Major Reduction In Cardiovascular Disease Seen In Mice Lacking CD44 Gene." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 October 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011002065345.htm>.
Wistar Institute. (2001, October 2). Major Reduction In Cardiovascular Disease Seen In Mice Lacking CD44 Gene. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 29, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011002065345.htm
Wistar Institute. "Major Reduction In Cardiovascular Disease Seen In Mice Lacking CD44 Gene." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011002065345.htm (accessed March 29, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) — Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) — A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

AP (Mar. 27, 2015) — The White House on Friday announced a five-year plan to fight the threat posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria amid fears that once-treatable germs could become deadly. (March 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) — In rare bipartisan harmony, congressional leaders pushed a $214 billion bill permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts toward House passage Thursday, moving lawmakers closer to resolving a problem that has plagued them for years. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins