Calcific aortic valve disease (CAVD) is a major cause of morbidity in the aging population, but the underlying mechanisms of its progression remain poorly understood. Aortic valve calcification preferentially occurs on the fibrosa, which is subjected to disturbed flow. The side-specific progression of the disease is characterized by inflammation, calcific lesions, and extracellular matrix (ECM) degradation. Here, we explored the role of mechanosensitive microRNA-181b and its downstream targets in human aortic valve endothelial cells (HAVECs). Mechanistically, miR-181b is upregulated in OS and fibrosa, and it targets TIMP3, SIRT1, and GATA6, correlated with increased gelatinase/MMP activity. Overexpression of miR-181b led to decreased TIMP3 and exacerbated MMP activity as shown by gelatinase assay, and miR-181b inhibition decreased gelatinase activity through the repression of TIMP3 levels. Luciferase assay showed specific binding of miR-181b to the TIMP3 gene. Overexpression of miR-181b in HAVECs subjected to either LS or OS increased MMP activity, and miR-181b inhibition abrogated shear-sensitive MMP activity. These studies suggest that targeting this shear-dependent miRNA may provide a novel noninvasive treatment for CAVD.
Cardiovascular Engineering and Technology – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 24, 2017
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