A Novel Mouse Model of Aortic Valve Stenosis Induced by Direct Wire Injury
Objective—The response-to-tissue-injury theory is currently the favorite paradigm to investigate valve pathology. To the best of our knowledge, there are currently no in vivo valve injury models. There are few calcific aortic valve stenosis (AVS) models that develop hemodynamically significant stenosis. Here, we investigated the effect of direct mechanical injury on aortic valves in vivo and developed a novel mouse model of calcific AVS.
Approach and Results—Aortic valve injury was created by inserting and moving a spring guidewire under echocardiographic guidance into the left ventricle of male C57/BL6 mice via right common carotid artery. Serial echocardiographic measurements revealed that aortic velocity was increased 1 week after injury and persistently increased until 16 weeks after injury. AVS mice showed a higher heart weight/body weight ratio and decreased left ventricular fractioning shortening 4 weeks after injury, compared with sham mice. We found remarkable proliferation of valve leaflets 4 weeks after injury. Proliferative valves showed increased production of reactive oxygen species and expression of inflammatory cytokines and osteochondrogenic factors. Alizarin red staining showed valvular calcification 12 weeks after injury.
Conclusions—We report a novel calcific AVS model to support the response-to-tissue-injury theory. This model may be a valuable tool for analyzing the mechanism of AVS and assessing therapeutic options.
- Received October 3, 2013.
- Accepted November 18, 2013.
- © 2013 American Heart Association, Inc.