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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Expression and activity of matrix metalloproteinase-2 in calcific aortic stenosis.

Calcific aortic stenosis is the main heart valve disease in the elderly, leading to massive focal calcification and thickening of the valve cusps. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are thought to contribute to this process. Therefore, the study assessed the expression of the gelatinases MMP-2 and MMP-9 and the endogenous tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)-2 as well as the gelatinolytic activity in normal and stenotic valves. Human tricuspid aortic valves with and without calcific aortic stenosis were studied by immunohistochemistry for MMP-2, MMP-9 and TIMP-2. The gelatinolytic activity in native valve sections was assessed by gelatin in situ zymography with or without addition of the MMP activator p-aminophenymercuric acetate (APMA). Staining intensities for MMP-2 and TIMP-2 were elevated in stenotic valves as compared to controls. Minor staining of MMP-9 was present exclusively in stenotic valves. The morphologic distribution of gelatinolytic activity was comparable to the staining pattern of MMP-2, and since MMP-9 immunostaining demonstrated only a low number of positive cells, the observed gelatinolytic activity is likely due to MMP-2. Gelatinolytic activity was low in normal valves but significantly increased by the MMP activator APMA. In contrast, stenotic valves showed a strong basal gelatinolytic activity that could not be significantly enhanced by APMA suggesting that MMP-2 is present as a latent pro-enzyme in normal valves and activated in stenotic valves. Thus, MMP-2 might be involved in the matrix remodeling during calcific aortic stenosis.[1]


  1. Expression and activity of matrix metalloproteinase-2 in calcific aortic stenosis. Kaden, J.J., Vocke, D.C., Fischer, C.S., Grobholz, R., Brueckmann, M., Vahl, C.F., Hagl, S., Haase, K.K., Dempfle, C.E., Borggrefe, M. Zeitschrift für Kardiologie. (2004) [Pubmed]
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