Enzyme keeps blood vessel walls intact | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 84 Issue 32 | p. 46 | Concentrates
Issue Date: August 7, 2006

Enzyme keeps blood vessel walls intact

Department: Science & Technology

Blood vessel collapse is low on anyone's wish list, and new research shows one enzyme that might control it. Structural integrity of the circulatory network requires the tight adhesion of cells that line the interior of blood vessels. When those adhesions break down, dilation and rupture follow close behind. Researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, have found an enzyme called HDAC7 that prevents the gene expression of proteins that degrade the inner lining of blood vessel walls (Cell 2006, 126, 321). "The realization that HDAC7 controls vascular integrity has implications for treating heart failure, aortic aneurisms, and other vascular diseases," says team member Eric N. Olson. He also points out that this research has potential applications in cancer therapeutics, where the goal is to find new ways to cut off a tumor's blood supply. The next step is to take the experiments from the cell into animal models.

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