Reduced expression of angiotensin II and angiotensin receptor type 1 and type 2 in resistance arteries from nasal lesions in granulomatosis with polyangiitis (Wegener's granulomatosis).

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Objectives: Angiotensin II (ANGII) is involved in vessel inflammation and is important in the development of cardiovascular disorders such as atherosclerosis. During active disease, patients with granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA; Wegener's granulomatosis) have accelerated atherosclerosis and ANGII inhibitors are recommended to these patients to reduce atherosclerosis. We assessed the hypothesis that the expression of ANGII and its receptors in arteries in granulomatous lesions change in GPA. Methods: ANGII and angiotensin receptors were quantified in vessels from granulomatous lesions from patients with GPA using immunohistochemistry. Anti- ANGI type 1 (AT1) and type 2 (AT2) antibodies were applied on formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded biopsies from nasal mucous membranes from eight patients with GPA and eight controls. Results: ANGII expression was localized to the endothelial cells (ECs) in arteries and sparsely to vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) in nasal biopsies. AT1 receptor (AT1R) staining was intense and located in the VSMCs in the medial layer of the control arteries. AT2 receptor (AT2R) immunostaining was faint and was located only in the ECs. Patients with GPA showed marked down-regulation of positively immunostained ECs for ANGII or AT2R, and a reduced number of AT1R in VSMCs. ANGII, AT1R, and AT2R staining was persistent on infiltrating leucocytes. Conclusions: These results suggest down-regulation of the angiotensin system in arteries in granulomatous nasal lesions in GPA. Inhibition of the angiotensin system may prove less efficient in inhibiting the vascular inflammation process in GPA.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Rheumatology and Autoimmunity
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)448-452
JournalScandinavian Journal of Rheumatology
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Publication categoryResearch

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