Cyclooxygenase expression in human diabetes

Chen, S 2006, Cyclooxygenase expression in human diabetes, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Medical Sciences, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Cyclooxygenase expression in human diabetes
Author(s) Chen, S
Year 2006
Abstract Cyclooxygenase (COX) is the rate limiting enzyme that catalyses the production of prostanoids, which are crucial to vascular homeostasis. Evidence suggests that endothelial dysfunction and inflammation play a role in vascular complications in aging and diabetes. Previous animal studies by our laboratory at RMIT University reported enhanced COX expression with aging in rat aortas, platelets and monocytes. Potentially, alteration in COX expression may result in an imbalanced prostanoid production favoring the synthesis of vasoconstrictors and hence increase the risk of cardiovascular events in the aging population. The regulation of altered COX expression in aging, however, is not clear. It has been suggested that histone hyperacetylation may be an important mechanism that regulates COX levels during the aging process as increased histone acetylation has been shown to occur with a ging. Thus, we hypothesized that COX expression is modulated by histone hyperacetylation. This was investigated by measuring COX expression in histone hyperacetylated cultured endothelial cells.

In the case of diabetes, studies have reported that the development of diabetes and its complications is associated with persistent inflammatory activity, evident with increased inflammatory markers in the circulation. COX-mediated pathways may be involved in this inflammatory process in diabetes. Furthermore, the formation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) is accelerated in diabetes. AGEs can bind to receptors for AGEs (RAGE), which has also been suggested to play a role in inflammation in diabetes. We hypothesized that COX- and RAGE-mediated pathways contribute to increased inflammation in diabetes and potentiate the development of diabetic vascular complications. This was investigated by measuring changes in COX-mediated pathways in both rat and human diabetic models.

The current thesis reports: 1) in cultured endothelial cells, histone hyperacetylation was associated with increased COX expression; 2) an overall increase in inflammation was observed in diabetes involving COX- and RAGE-mediated pathways. This was supported by increased platelet COX-1 and monocyte COX-2 levels in Zucker rats, increased monocyte COX-2 in human Type 1 diabetes and elevated plasma TXB2 and PGE2 levels in both human Type 1 and Type 2 diabetic subjects. Up-regulation of RAGE expression was further found in platelets and monocytes in both human diabetes types. When treated with NSAIDs, plasma prostanoid levels, COX and RAGE expression were reduced significantly in both platelets and monocytes in human diabetic subjects. 3) It is unclear how COX and RAGE expression was regulated, but histone modifications may be one of the mechanisms. Data from cultured cells indicated that increased COX expression was associated with increased histone acetylation levels induced by TSA. Concurrent increases in histone acetylation and COX-2 levels were also observed in human Type 1 diabetes, but similar findings were not observed in human Type 2 diabetes. In addition, we failed to find an age-dependent increase in monocyte histone H4 acetylation in human Type 2 diabetes despite an age-dependent increase in monocyte COX-2 expression. Thus, whether histone hyperacetylation modulates COX expression and in what conditions require further investigation.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Medical Sciences
Keyword(s) Diabetes
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