Yao Mattisson I, Rattik S, Björkbacka H, Ljungcrantz I, Terrinoni M, Lebens M, Holmgren J, Fredrikson GN, Gullstrand B, Bengtsson AA, Nilsson J, Wigren M
Vascul Pharmacol 140 (-) 106863 [2021-10-00; online 2021-04-15]
Patients suffering from systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) are at increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease (CVD) and traditional therapies including statins provide insufficient protection. Impaired removal of apoptotic material is a common pathogenic mechanism in both SLE and atherosclerosis and is considered to be a key factor in the development of autoimmunity. Since oxidized LDL and apoptotic material bind to the same receptors, we aimed to investigate if targeting the oxidized LDL autoimmunity can affect atherosclerosis in SLE. To investigate the possible role of oxidized LDL autoimmunity in the accelerated atherosclerosis associated with SLE we used a hypercholesterolemic SLE mouse model (B6.lpr.ApoE-/- mice). Promoting LDL tolerance through mucosal immunization with an apolipoprotein B-100 peptide p45 (amino acids 661-680) and cholera toxin B-subunit fusion protein increased regulatory T cells and B cells in mesenteric lymph nodes and reduced plaque development in the aorta by 33%. Treatment with the oxidized LDL-specific antibody Orticumab reduced aortic atherosclerosis by 43%, subvalvular plaque area by 50% and the macrophage content by 31%. The present study provides support for oxLDL as a possible target for prevention of cardiovascular complications in SLE.