Bethesda, MD—A new discovery published in the October 2011 print issue of The FASEB Journal (http://www.fasebj.org) explains for the first time what kicks off the process that causes varicose veins. In the article, researchers from Germany describe a single protein that binds to DNA to control gene function (called "transcription factor AP-1") and the subsequent production of a newly discovered set of proteins that significantly affect the development of varicose veins.
"We very much hope that our findings spur further studies focusing on the mechanisms underlying this widespread and precarious but still largely neglected venous disease," said Thomas Korff, Ph.D., study author from the Institute of Physiology and Pathophysiology at the University of Heidelberg in Heidelberg, Germany. "In the long run, such approaches will result in the development of a drug therapy that improves the quality of life for all people suffering from varicose veins."
To make this discovery, Korff and colleagues increased the blood pressure in a single vein of the ears of white mice, and followed the resulting changes in the size and architecture of the adjacent veins for several days. These changes were further analyzed in the abundance and activity of specific proteins in the veins connected to the one with increased blood pressure, and results were compared to those obtained from human varicose veins. By inhibiting the transcription factor AP-1 in the mouse ear model, synthesis of proteins associated with varicose remodeling and the proliferation of blood vessel smooth muscle cells were significantly reduced, and the varicose remodeling process was virtually abolished. AP-1 was inhibited by decoy oligonucleotides (decoy ODN), a well-studied class of nucleic acid-based drugs.
"Most people know varicose veins as an unsightly reminder of aging," said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal, "but for some, varicose veins cause significant pain that affects the quality and in some cases, length of life. While surgery may be beneficial in some cases, it's not the ideal solution. This research really opens the doors for an entirely new approach to treatment and prevention."
Receive monthly highlights from The FASEB Journal by e-mail. Sign up at http://www.faseb.org/fjupdate.aspx. The FASEB Journal (http://www.fasebj.org) is published by the Federation of the American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) and celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2011. Over the past quarter century, the journal has been recognized by the Special Libraries Association as one of the top 100 most influential biomedical journals of the past century and is the most cited biology journal worldwide according to the Institute for Scientific Information.
FASEB comprises 24 societies with more than 100,000 members, making it the largest coalition of biomedical research associations in the United States. FASEB enhances the ability of scientists and engineers to improve—through their research—the health, well-being and productivity of all people. FASEB's mission is to advance health and welfare by promoting progress and education in biological and biomedical sciences through service to our member societies and collaborative advocacy.
Details: Anja Feldner, Hannes Otto, Stephan Rewerk, Markus Hecker, and Thomas Korff. Experimental hypertension triggers varicosis-like maladaptive venous remodeling through activator protein-1. FASEB J. 2011 25:3613-3621; doi: 10.1096/fj.11-185975 ; http://www.fasebj.org/content/25/10/3613.abstract
Cody Mooneyhan | EurekAlert!
Multi-institutional collaboration uncovers how molecular machines assemble
02.12.2016 | Salk Institute
Fertilized egg cells trigger and monitor loss of sperm’s epigenetic memory
02.12.2016 | IMBA - Institut für Molekulare Biotechnologie der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften GmbH
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering
02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science
02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy