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Clin Chem Lab Med. 2001 May;39(5):380-4.

Circulating matrix metalloproteinases and their inhibitors in premature coronary atherosclerosis.

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The Second Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, Kanazawa University, Japan.


To investigate the clinical significance of circulating matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and their tissue inhibitos (TIMPs) in patients with premature coronary atheroscrelosis, we studied 53 consecutive male patients with angiographically defined premature (<65 years) and stable coronary artery disease. Plasma levels of MMP-2, MMP-3, MMP-9, TIMP-1, and TIMP-2 were determined in peripheral blood by a sandwich enzyme immunoassay, and the results were compared with those from 133 age-matched control males. There were significant differences in all the MMPs and TIMPs (p<0.001) between patients and controls. In the patient group, the levels of MMP-9 (mean +/- SD (ng/ml) 27.2 +/- 15.2/21.8 +/- 15.2) and TIMP-1 (130.4 +/- 55.7/94.5 +/- 26.3) were significantly higher, and the levels of MMP-2 (632.5 +/- 191.6/727.6 +/- 171.4), MMP-3 (53.1 +/- 31.2/79.6 +/- 29.9), and TIMP-2 (24.7 +/- 15.2/35.4 +/- 16.4) were significantly lower than those of controls. We found significant positive correlation between plasma MMP-9 levels and low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol levels (Rs = 0.168, p = 0.022), and significant negative correlation between plasma MMP-9 levels and high-density lipoprotein (HDL)-cholesterol levels (Rs = -0.164, p = 0.026) by Spearman rank correlation test. In contrast, plasma MMP-2 (Rs = 0.181, p = 0.014) and MMP-3 (Rs = 0.260, p = 0.0004) levels were positively correlated with HDL-cholesterol levels. TIMP-2 levels were negatively correlated with total cholesterol (Rs = -0.197, p = 0.007) and LDL-cholesterol (Rs = -0.168, p=0.022) levels. These results suggest that the circulating levels of MMPs and TIMPs are altered in patients with premature coronary atherosclerosis and that plasma lipoprotein cholesterol levels correlate with these, possibly as a result of the lipoprotein-vessel wall interactions.

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