It is known that there is abnormal osteopontin (OPN) expression at the sites of atherosclerotic lesions. In the Apolipoprotein E gene knockout (ApoE-KO) mouse, a model of the atherosclerotic process, altered cholesterol metabolism with associated increase in OPN expression is evident at 12-22 weeks in the aorta and at 22 weeks in the heart. In this study, we analyzed another animal model of hypothyroid mice created by ingestion of propylthiouracil (PTU). After 2 weeks of PTU ingestion, the animals had significant decreases in thyroid hormones (T3 and T4) and immediate increases in blood lipids/cholesterol. Hypothyroid mice showed 1.3-, 1.5-, 2-fold increases in blood levels of total cholesterol, triglycerides, and low density lipoprotein-cholesterol respectively. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR analysis showed that hypothyroid mice had 1.4- to 2-fold increases of OPN mRNA expression in the aorta and 1.5-fold increases in the heart. Hypothyroid animals treated with T3 (5 μg/day for 6 days) or statin (0.2 mg/30 g for 2 weeks) reduce blood lipids and aortic OPN mRNA expression. Data obtained with ELISA analyses showed 1.5- and 1.7-fold increases in OPN protein in the aorta (10 weeks) and the heart (22 weeks), respectively. This increase is close to the mRNA expression in both tissues of hypothyroid mice. In addition, western blots showed several variants of OPN protein expressed in the aorta and the heart. The decrease in the 70 kDa OPN is accompanied by an increase in 45 kDa OPN in the aorta of hypothyroid mice. In contrast, only 45 kDa OPN is found in the heart of control and hypothyroid mice. These data indicate that the increase of OPN mRNA and protein expression occurs in cardiovascular tissues of hypothyroid mice.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Molecular Biology
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Cell Biology
- Biochemistry, medical
- Pharmacology (medical)