Title: Effects of subchronic exposures to concentrated ambient particles (CAPs) in mice. V. CAPs exacerbate aortic plaque development in hyperlipidemic mice.
Authors: Chen, Lung Chi; Nadziejko, Christine
Published In Inhal Toxicol, (2005 Apr)
Abstract: Recent epidemiological studies suggest that long-term exposure to particulate matter (PM) causes chronic effects on the cardiovascular system that result in cumulative increases cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Since atherosclerosis is a progressive irreversible condition and an underlying cause of many cardiovascular diseases, we hypothesized that long-term exposure to PM causes adverse cardiovascular effects by exacerbating atherosclerosis. In this study, we exposed C57- and ApoE-deficient (ApoE-/-) and ApoE, LDLr (DK)-deficient mice to concentrated ambient PM2.5 for 6 h/5 days/wk, for up to 5 mo. The overall mean exposure concentration for these groups of animals was 110 microg/m3. The cross-sectional area of the aorta root of DK mice was examined morphologically using confocal microscopy for the severity of lesion, extent of cellularity, and lipid contents. Aortas from the arch to the iliac bifurcations were also sectioned longitudinally and lesion areas were stained with Sudan IV. All DK mice regardless of exposure had developed extensive lesions in the aortic sinus regions, with lesion areas that covered more than 79% of the total area. In male DK mice, the lesion areas in the aortic sinus regions appeared to be enhanced by concentrated ambient particles (CAPs), with changes approaching statistical significance (p = .06). In addition, plaque cellularity was increased by 28% (p = .014, combined), whereas there were no CAPs-associated changes in the lipid content in these mice. When examining the entire aorta opened longitudinally, both the ApoE-/- and DK mice had prominent areas of severe atherosclerosis covering 40% or more of the lumenal surface. Visual examination of all images suggested that plaques tend to form in clusters concentrating near the aortic arch and and the iliac bifurcations. Quantitative measurements showed that CAPs exposure increased the percentage of aortic intimal surface covered by grossly discernible atherosclerotic lesion by 57% in the ApoE-/- mice (p = .03). Changes produced by CAPs in male (10% increase) or female DK mice (8% increase) were not statistically significant. In this study, we have demonstrated that subchronic exposure to CAPs in mice prone to develop atherosclerotic lesions had a significant impact on the size, severity, and composition of aortic plaque.
PubMed ID: 15804939
MeSH Terms: Air Pollutants/toxicity*; Animals; Aorta/pathology*; Apolipoproteins E/genetics; Arteriosclerosis/etiology*; Disease Models, Animal; Female; Inhalation Exposure*; Lipoproteins, LDL/genetics; Male; Mice; Mice, Knockout; Particle Size; Severity of Illness Index; Sex Factors