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

Estrogen inhibits the response-to-injury in a mouse carotid artery model.

The atheroprotective effects of estrogen are well documented, but the mechanisms responsible for these effects are not well understood. To study the role of physiologic (nanomolar) estrogen levels on the arterial response-to-injury, we applied a mouse carotid artery injury model to ovariectomized C57BL/6J mice. Mice were treated with vehicle (-E2, n = 10) or 17 beta-estradiol (+E2, n = 10) for 7 d, subjected to unilateral carotid injury, and 14 d later contralateral (normal = NL) and injured carotids from -E2 and +E2 animals were pressure fixed, harvested, and analyzed by quantitative morphometry. E2 levels in +E2 mice were consistently in the nanomolar range (2.1-2.5 nM) at days 0, 7, and 14. At 14 d, measures of both intimal and medial area were markedly increased in the -E2 group: (-E2 vs NL, P < 0.05 for both), but were unchanged from normal levels in the +E2 group (+E2 vs NL, P = NS and +E2 vs -E2, P < 0.05 for both). Cellular proliferation, as assessed by bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) labeling, was significantly increased over NL in the -E2 mice, but this increase was markedly attenuated in the estrogen replacement group (total BrdU positive cells/section: NL = 6.4 +/- 4.5; -E2 = 113 +/- 26, +E2 = 40 +/- 3.7; -E2 vs NL, P < 0.05; +E2 vs NL, P = NS; -E2 vs +E2, P < 0.05). These data (a) demonstrate significant suppression of the mouse carotid response-to-injury by physiologic levels of estrogen replacement; (b) support the utility of this model in the study of the biologic effects of estrogen on the vascular-injury response; and (c) suggest a direct effect of estrogen on vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation in injured vessels.[1]


  1. Estrogen inhibits the response-to-injury in a mouse carotid artery model. Sullivan, T.R., Karas, R.H., Aronovitz, M., Faller, G.T., Ziar, J.P., Smith, J.J., O'Donnell, T.F., Mendelsohn, M.E. J. Clin. Invest. (1995) [Pubmed]
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