Association of serum MMP-9 with autoantibodies against oxidized LDL


      Monocyte-derived macrophages in atherosclerotic plaques secrete matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), which may contribute to plaque rupture. There has been much speculation as to which factors precipitate in the arterial inflammation. Oxidized low density lipoprotein (oxLDL) has been suggested to have proinflammatory properties, and it has been shown to increase matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) secretion by macrophages in vitro. We determined serum MMP-9 concentration and autoantibodies against oxLDL by ELISA in men with angina pectoris (n=243) and age-matched controls (n=238). The association between serum MMP-9 concentration and autoantibodies against oxLDL was evaluated. Autoantibody level against oxLDL, expressed in optical density units, was significantly higher in subjects with angina pectoris compared to controls (0.100±0.064 versus 0.088±0.051, respectively, P=0.030), but serum levels of MMP-9 did not differ significantly between these groups (54.2±29.9 versus 50.6±23.1 μg/l). However, autoantibodies against oxLDL correlated positively with serum MMP-9 (r=0.21, P<0.001). In a multiple regression model (including age, diastolic blood pressure, cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, BMI, smoking and MMP-9) serum MMP-9 (β=0.200, P<0.001) and smoking (β=0.179, P<0.001) were significantly associated with autoantibodies against oxLDL. In conclusion, autoantibodies against oxLDL were positively associated with angina pectoris and serum MMP-9. Since autoantibody level against oxLDL could be expected to reflect the degree of oxLDL in the vessel wall, our results suggest that oxLDL is associated with MMP-9 in vivo.


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