Abstract 463: TLT-1 Deficiency Affects Hypercholesterolemia and Progression of the Atherosclerotic Plaque in Apoe Null Mice
Platelet activation at sites of inflammation triggers the secretion of molecules that induce the transition of atherosclerosis from fatty streak to an acute disease, featuring an increased vulnerability of the atherosclerotic lesion that results in plaque rupture and thrombosis. TLT-1 (Triggering Receptor Expressed in Myeloid cells (TREM)-like transcript-1) is a molecule exclusively found in the α-granules of megakarocytes and platelets and has a demonstrated effect in inflammatory responses. Upon platelet activation, TLT-1 is moved to the platelet surface, while its soluble form, s-TLT-1, is secreted and detected in serum. Studies using the C57Bl/6 treml1-/- mouse demonstrated a predisposition to hemorrhage after an acute inflammatory challenge suggesting that TLT-1 may be a key regulatory molecule in the interface between hemostatic and inflammatory mechanisms. Because we have found that sTLT-1 levels are significantly elevated in apoE mice when compared to wild type, we hypothesized that TLT-1 may be playing an important role in the progression of atherosclerosis. To address this possibility, we generated apoE-/-/treml1-/- double knockout mice [DN]. Assessment of lesions after 4 weeks high-fat diet (HFD) demonstrated that at early stages, TLT-1 deficiency accelerates fatty streak formation. After 20 weeks on HFD, lesions in both apoE-/- and [DN] mice progressed to an advance fibrous plaque stage. Although their lesion sizes were not substantially different, lesion compositions were. The mechanistic basis of these differences appears to be that the [DN] mice have significantly higher cholesterol levels when compared to apoE-/- mice. The increased cholesterol levels extend to the treml1-/- mouse when compared to wild type mice at 4 weeks on HFD, this difference, however, gradually subsides as wild type mice cholesterol levels increase over 20 weeks. Interestingly, cholesterol levels in 50 week old mice on chow diet revealed minimal differences between test and control mice suggesting the higher cholesterol levels are related to increased dietary intake. Our work defines a surprising role for TLT-1 in the regulation of serum cholesterol levels during atherogenesis.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.