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dc.contributor.authorFellows, Adam Lee
dc.date.accessioned2018-05-10T12:16:37Z
dc.date.available2018-05-10T12:16:37Z
dc.date.issued2018-07-01
dc.date.submitted2018-05-09
dc.identifier.urihttps://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/275687
dc.description.abstractFOXO3a is a pro-apoptotic transcription factor which shows increased activation in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) of advanced atherosclerotic plaques, specifically within the intimal layer. Since VSMC apoptosis plays a crucial role in the pathophysiology of atherosclerosis, we investigated the mechanisms underlying FOXO3a-mediated cell death in this particular cell type. We aimed to characterise a novel VSMC system (FOXO3aA3ERTM) and use these cells to validate MMP-13 and TIMP3 as new FOXO3a target genes. Also, we sought to determine the mechanisms of FOXO3aA3ERTM-mediated VSMC apoptosis, particularly regarding MMP-13 and TIMP3, potential MMP-13 substrates in the extracellular matrix and the precise apoptotic signalling involved. Furthermore, we aimed to investigate whether VSMC-specific activation of FOXO3aA3ERTM in mouse affects vascular remodelling during injury and whether this is reliant on MMP-13. Lastly, we aimed to address if endogenous FOXO3a upregulates MMP-13 in mouse and human VSMCs. Our laboratory has created a transgenic rat VSMC line which stably expresses an inducible FOXO3a mutant allele known as FOXO3aA3ERTM and previous microarray experiments identified matrix metalloproteinase 13 (MMP-13) as a potential novel FOXO3a target gene. Initially, we described several key features of the FOXO3aA3ERTM VSMCs used throughout this thesis, and subsequently demonstrated that MMP-13 is a bona fide target whose expression is rapidly upregulated upon FOXO3a activation, leading to markedly higher levels of protein, cleavage and proteolytic capacity. This induction of MMP-13 was responsible for the vast majority of FOXO3a-mediated apoptosis which was accompanied by prominent degradation of fibronectin, a glycoprotein found in the extracellular matrix. However, we could not identify a terminal apoptotic pathway. FOXO3a also downregulated the endogenous MMP inhibitor TIMP3, the recombinant protein of which reduced both MMP-13 proteolysis and FOXO3a-mediated apoptosis. Activation of FOXO3aA3ERTM in the VSMCs of medium and large arteries in mice resulted in heightened expression of MMP-13 in the vessel wall, which contributed to enhanced neointimal formation during carotid ligation. Finally, endogenous FOXO3a activation leads to increased MMP-13 expression in human VSMCs, but not mouse. Overall, we have shown that FOXO3a promotes VSMC apoptosis through MMP-13 both in vitro and in vivo, a novel pathway that has important implications for the pathogenesis and treatment of vascular disease.
dc.language.isoen
dc.rightsAll rights reserved
dc.rightsAll Rights Reserveden
dc.rights.urihttps://www.rioxx.net/licenses/all-rights-reserved/en
dc.subjectAtherosclerosis
dc.subjectApoptosis
dc.subjectVascular Smooth Muscle Cells
dc.subjectFOXO3a
dc.titleFOXO3a in Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell Apoptosis
dc.typeThesis
dc.type.qualificationlevelDoctoral
dc.type.qualificationnameDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)
dc.publisher.institutionUniversity of Cambridge
dc.publisher.departmentMedicine
dc.date.updated2018-05-10T11:32:30Z
dc.identifier.doi10.17863/CAM.22947
dc.type.qualificationtitlePhD in Cardiovascular Medicine
cam.supervisorBennett, Martin
cam.thesis.fundingfalse
rioxxterms.freetoread.startdate2400-01-01


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