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Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2011 Nov 15;257(1):148-54. doi: 10.1016/j.taap.2011.08.028. Epub 2011 Sep 7.

Polychlorinated biphenyl 77 augments angiotensin II-induced atherosclerosis and abdominal aortic aneurysms in male apolipoprotein E deficient mice.

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Graduate Center for Nutritional Sciences, University of Kentucky, 800 Rose Street, Lexington, KY 40536-0200, USA.


Infusion of angiotensin II (AngII) to hyperlipidemic mice augments atherosclerosis and causes formation of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs). Each of these AngII-induced vascular pathologies exhibit pronounced inflammation. Previous studies demonstrated that coplanar polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) promote inflammation in endothelial cells and adipocytes, two cell types implicated in AngII-induced vascular pathologies. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that administration of PCB77 to male apolipoprotein E (ApoE) -/- mice promotes AngII-induced atherosclerosis and AAA formation. Male ApoE-/- mice were administered vehicle or PCB77 (49 mg/kg, i.p.) during week 1 and 4 (2 divided doses/week) of AngII infusion. Body weights and total serum cholesterol concentrations were not influenced by administration of PCB77. Systolic blood pressure was increased in AngII-infused mice administered PCB77 compared to vehicle (156±6 vs 137±5 mmHg, respectively). The percentage of aortic arch covered by atherosclerotic lesions was increased in AngII-infused mice administered PCB77 compared to vehicle (2.0±0.4 vs 0.9±0.1%, respectively). Lumen diameters of abdominal aortas determined by in vivo ultrasound and external diameters of excised suprarenal aortas were increased in AngII-infused mice administered PCB77 compared to vehicle. In addition, AAA incidence increased from 47 to 85% in AngII-infused mice administered PCB77. Adipose tissue in close proximity to AAAs from mice administered PCB77 exhibited increased mRNA abundance of proinflammatory cytokines and elevated expression of components of the renin-angiotensin system (angiotensinogen, angiotensin type 1a receptor (AT1aR)). These results demonstrate that PCB77 augments AngII-induced atherosclerosis and AAA formation.

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