Navigation Links
Protein thought to protect against oxidative stress also promotes clogging of arteries
Date:1/10/2011

UCLA researchers have found that a protein that plays an important role in some antioxidant therapies may not be as effective due to additional mechanisms that cause it to promote atherosclerosis, or clogging of the arteries.

Published in the January issue of the journal Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology, the finding may give clues as to why some antioxidant therapies have not yielded more positive results.

The protein, called Nrf2, has been thought to be an important drug-therapy target for diseases such as cancer because it can induce chemopreventive activity by attaching to specific sequences of DNA, leading to the release of numerous antioxidant and anti-inflammatory genes and enzymes that can decrease or inhibit the effects of carcinogens.

Researchers reasoned that Nrf2, with its potent ability to boost antioxidants, might also be useful in combating the cell and tissue damage, or oxidation, that leads to atherosclerosis.

However, UCLA scientists found that while Nrf2 boosted antioxidant properties in an animal model, it also increased the development of atherosclerosis by raising plasma cholesterol levels and cholesterol content in the liver.

According to researchers, this is the first study to document these additional effects on cholesterol metabolism in tandem with plaque formation in the arteries.

"We were very surprised at the finding," said principal investigator Dr. Jesus Araujo, director of environmental cardiology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. "In fact, the atherosclerosis-producing factors were greater than the antioxidant benefits. The development of novel antioxidant therapies is quite important, and this research may help shed light on why treatments affecting this protein may not be as effective as we thought."

For the study, the team was able to isolate and identify Nrf2's actions by looking at what would happen in mice that were specially bred without the protein.

Researchers found that male mice without Nrf2 had decreased levels of antioxidants, as would be expected, but also exhibited a 53 percent reduction in atherosclerotic plaques in the aorta, compared with normal animals. Mice with only half the gene expression for Nrf2 exhibited the same degree of plaque formation as normal animals.

The team then tried to arrive at a better understanding of what was going on by evaluating several factors that could be affected by the Nrf2 protein.

Scientists found that the mice without any Nrf2 had lower levels of total cholesterol in the blood and lower amounts of cholesterol in the liver. The protein deficiency also led to reduced expression of the genes involved in synthesizing and storing fat and regulating glucose in the liver, which are part of the process of manufacturing cholesterol.

According to Araujo, the study findings point to new and important effects of the Nrf2 protein in regulating cholesterol production as well as antioxidant pathways.

"The cholesterol effects may need to be taken into consideration when developing antioxidant therapies using this protein," said Fen Yin, a co-author of the study and a research associate in the division of cardiology at UCLA. "The dosage or level of this gene expression could be important to balance the two effects."

In addition, investigators found that most of the effects of Nrf2 were more highly prevalent in the male mice. More studies will be needed to examine whether these sex differences in the animal model would be similar in humans.

Araujo noted that more research will also assess whether other environmental, metabolic and genetic elements play a role in the impact of Nrf2 on cholesterol and antioxidants.


'/>"/>

Contact: Rachel Champeau
rchampeau@mednet.ucla.edu
310-794-2270
University of California - Los Angeles
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. New and Delicious, Almond Butter Filled, Cookie Bites With 35.7% Protein to Help Manage Weight and Build Muscle
2. Research highlights role of protein pair in obesity regulation
3. Urine protein test might help diagnose kidney damage from lupus, UT Southwestern researchers find
4. Smithfield, United Food and Commercial Workers Union, and Food Networks Paula Deen to Deliver 150,000 Servings of Protein to San Francisco Food Bank
5. Protein Sciences Corporation Announces Profitable and Cash Flow Positive Results for 2009 and Management Realignment
6. Protein Appears Key to Intestinal Balance
7. SIBLING proteins may predict oral cancer
8. Damaged protein identified as early diagnostic biomarker for Alzheimers disease in healthy adults
9. Cells of aggressive leukemia hijack normal protein to grow
10. Omega Protein Comments on California Lawsuit Alleging Fish Oil Contaminants
11. Proteins May Predict Spread of Colon Cancer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... , ... TherapySites, the leading website and online ... Counseling Association. This new relationship allows TherapySites to continue to extend their ... benefits and promotional offers. , "TCA is extremely excited about this new partnership, ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... Overland Park, KS (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... leader in retailers of Eyeglasses . , Millions of individuals in the United ... life, eyeglasses have become a way to both correct vision and make a fashion ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... California (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... Pixel ... Cut Pro X. , "Film editors can give their videos a whole new perspective ... Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains over ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Many women are ... with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate symptoms ... can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The specialists ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... temporary closing of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible lice infestation, ... aspect of head lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human host, and ... necessary one in the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. , As ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016 ... announced the addition of the " Global Markets ... This report focuses ... an updated review, including its applications in various applications. ... market, which includes three main industries: pharmaceutical and biotechnology, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has announced ... Diagnostic Tests" report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers ... Market analysis in the report includes the following: ... Diagnostic Kits) by Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016  MedSource announced today that it has ... solution of choice.  This latest decision demonstrates MedSource,s ... their clients by offering a state-of-the-art electronic data ... nowEDC as the EDC platform of choice in ... "nowEDC has long been a preferred EDC platform ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: