Degeneration and atherosclerosis inducing increased deposition of type IIA secretory phospholipase A2, C-reactive protein and complement in aortic valves cause neutrophilic granulocyte influx.

K. Kupreishvili, A. Baidoshvili, M. ter Weeme, M.A.J.M. Huijbregts, P.A.J. Krijnen, V.W. van Hinsbergh, W. Stooker, L. Eijsman, H.W. Niessen

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BACKGROUND AND AIM OF THE STUDY: Recent studies have indicated that atherosclerosis-like changes are involved in the pathogenesis of aortic valve stenosis. Increased blood and valve tissue levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) have been reported in patients with aortic valve disease, although the different pathological conditions involved were not analyzed. The study aim was to monitor the deposition of CRP, its activator sPLA2-IIA and its effector complement, and the subsequent influx of neutrophilic granulocytes in degenerative and atherosclerotic aortic valves.

METHODS: Human tricuspid aortic valves (n = 57) obtained at autopsy included five control valves, 36 aortic valves with atherosclerotic changes, and 16 with degenerative changes. All valves were analyzed immunohistochemically for the presence of sPLA2-IIA, CRP, C3d and MPO (to detect neutrophilic granulocytes), and subsequently quantified using computer-assisted morphometry.

RESULTS: In aortic valves with degeneration, the areas of sPLA2-IIA, CRP and complement deposition were all significantly increased compared to control valves. These mediators were even more extensively deposited in atherosclerotically changed aortic valves. The increased deposition of these mediators coincided with a significant increase of neutrophilic granulocytes in atherosclerotic and degenerated aortic valves, compared to control valves.

CONCLUSION: The study results indicate that sPLA2-IIA, CRP, and C3d are significantly more activated in atherosclerotic aortic valves compared to degeneratively changed aortic valves. A significant increase was also identified in neutrophilic granulocytes in non-infectious, diseased valves (atherosclerosis and degeneration).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-36
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of heart valve disease
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aortic Valve
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Autopsy
  • C-Reactive Protein
  • Comparative Study
  • Complement C3d
  • Female
  • Group II Phospholipases A2
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Journal Article
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Netherlands
  • Neutrophil Infiltration
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

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