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Acta Biochim Pol. 2010;57(3):251-60. Epub 2010 Aug 19.

Suppressor of cytokine signaling and accelerated atherosclerosis in kidney disease.

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Laboratory of Human Molecular Genetics, Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Faculty of Biology, University of Adam Mickiewicz, PoznaƄ, Poland.


The prevalence of cardiovascular disease in patients with renal failure is extremely high and accounts for a large part of the morbidity and mortality. Inflammation participates importantly in host defense against infectious agents and injury, but also contributes to the pathophysiology of many diseases, including cardiovascular atherosclerosis, which is a main problem in patients with renal failure. Recruitment of blood leukocytes to the injured vascular endothelium characterizes the initiation and progression of atherosclerosis and involves many inflammatory mediators, modulated by cells of both innate and adaptive immunity. Excessive inflammatory and immune responses, communicated by these different cell types, are driven by inflammatory cytokines that promote associated tissue damage if cytokine signaling pathways remain unregulated. Thus, pathways capable of suppressing proinflammatory cytokine signaling hold the potential to limit life-threatening cardiovascular events caused by atherogenesis. Suppressor of cytokine signaling (SOCS) are a family of intracellular proteins, several of which have emerged as key physiological regulators of cytokine-mediated homeostasis, including innate and adaptive immunity. Accumulating evidence supports the idea that dysregulation of cytokine signaling by differential SOCS expression is involved in the pathogenesis of various inflammatory, and immunological diseases, including atherosclerosis. Based on recent observations, in which SOCS expression levels are profoundly altered in kidney disease, we discuss the possibilities of SOCS as new intracellular markers of inflammation as well as their potential atherogenic properties in renal failure related cardiovascular disease.

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