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Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2010 Aug;30(8):1583-90. doi: 10.1161/ATVBAHA.110.205757. Epub 2010 May 13.

The mouse atherosclerosis locus at chromosome 10 (Ath11) acts early in lesion formation with subcongenic strains delineating 2 narrowed regions.

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  • 1Laboratory of Biochemical Genetics and Metabolism, Rockefeller University, New York, NY, USA.



Ath11, an atherosclerosis susceptibility locus on proximal chromosome 10 (0 to 21 cM) revealed in a cross between apolipoprotein E deficient C57BL/6 (B6) and FVB mice, was recently confirmed in congenic mice. The objectives of this study were to assess how Ath11 affects lesion development and morphology, to determine aortic gene expression in congenics, and to narrow the congenic interval.


Assessing lesion area over time in congenic mice showed that homozygosity for the FVB allele increased lesion area at 6 weeks persisting through to 24 weeks of age. Staining of aortic root sections at 16 weeks did not reveal obvious differences between congenics. Aortic expression-array analysis at 6 weeks revealed 97 genes that were >2-fold regulated, including 1 gene in the quantitative trait locus interval, Aldh8a1, and 2 gene clusters regulated by Hnf4alpha and Esr1. Analysis of lesion area in 11 subcongenic strains revealed 2 narrowed regions, 10a (21 genes), acting in females, and 10b (7 genes), acting in both genders.


Ath11 appears to act early in lesion formation, with significant effects on aortic gene expression. This quantitative trait locus is genetically complex, containing a female-specific region 10a from 0 to 7.3 megabases (21 genes) and a gender-independent region 10b from 20.1 to 21.9 megabases (7 genes).

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