Objective - Collagen accumulation and calcification are major determinants of atherosclerotic plaque stability. Extracellular vesicle (EV)-derived microcalcifications in the collagen-poor fibrous cap may promote plaque rupture. In this study, we hypothesize that the collagen receptor discoidin domain receptor-1 (DDR-1) regulates collagen deposition and release of calcifying EVs by vascular smooth muscle cells (SMCs) through the transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) pathway. Approach and Results - SMCs from the carotid arteries of DDR-1-/- mice and wild-type littermates (n=5-10 per group) were cultured in normal or calcifying media. At days 14 and 21, SMCs were harvested and EVs isolated for analysis. Compared with wild-type, DDR-1-/- SMCs exhibited a 4-fold increase in EV release (P-/- phenotype was characterized by increased mineralization (Alizarin Red S and Osteosense, P-/- SMCs in calcifying media (P-/- phenotype, corroborating a causal relationship between DDR-1 and TGF-β in EV-mediated vascular calcification. Conclusions - DDR-1 interacts with the TGF-β pathway to restrict calcifying EV-mediated mineralization and fibrosis by SMCs. We therefore establish a novel mechanism of cell-matrix homeostasis in atherosclerotic plaque formation.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Mar 2016|
- extracellular matrix
- extracellular vesicles
- smooth muscle
- transforming growth factors