Atherosclerosis is increasingly recognized as a complex chronic inflammatory disease. Many more studies have extended vaccination against atherosclerosis by using epitopes from self-antigens or beyond and demonstrated that vaccination with antigens or derivatives could reduce the extent of the lesions in atherosclerosis-prone mice. Our previous study has demonstrated that construct AHHC [ApoB100688-707 + hHSP60303-312 + hHSP60153-163 + Cpn derived peptide (C)] significantly reduced atherosclerotic lesion. The aim of this study was to investigate whether AHHC can be modulated towards increased lesion reduction in mice by creating two other derivatives with a sequential epitope-substitution named RHHC in which A was replaced by an "R" (C5aR1-31) and RPHC with a further "H" (hHSP60303-312) conversion into "P" (protease-activated receptor-142-55) in mice. Antigenic epitopes were incorporated into a dendroaspin scaffold. Immunization of B6;129S-Ldlrtm1HerApobtm2Sgy/J mice with three constructs elicited production of high levels of antibodies against each epitope (apart from hHSP60153-163 and P which induced a low antibody response). Histological analyses demonstrated that the mice immunized with either RPHC or RHHC showed significant reductions in the size of atherosclerostic lesions compared to those with AHHC (69.5±1.1% versus 55.7±3.4%, P<0.01 or 65.6±1.3% versus 55.7±3.4%, P<0.01). Reduction of plaque size in the aortic sinus and descending aorta correlated with alterations in cellular immune responses when compared with controls. We conclude that a recombinant construct RPHC may provide new antigenic and structural features which are favorable for significant reduction in atherosclerotic lesion formation. This approach offers a novel strategy for developing anti-atherosclerotic agents.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)