Hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy) is associated with increased diabetic cardiovascular diseases. However, the role of HHcy in atherogenesis associated with hyperglycemia (HG) remains unknown. To examine the role and mechanisms by which HHcy accelerates HG-induced atherosclerosis, we established an atherosclerosissusceptible HHcy and HG mouse model. HHcy was established in mice deficient in cystathionine b-synthase (Cbs) in which the homocysteine (Hcy) level could be lowered by inducing transgenic human CBS (Tg-hCBS) using Zn supplementation. HG was induced by streptozotocin injection. Atherosclerosis was induced by crossing Tg-hCBS Cbs mice with apolipoprotein E-deficient (ApoE-/-) mice and feeding them a high-fat diet for 2 weeks. We demonstrated that HHcy and HG accelerated atherosclerosis and increased lesion monocytes (MCs) and macrophages (MØs) and further increased inflammatory MC and MØ levels in peripheral tissues. Furthermore, Hcy-lowering reversed circulating mononuclear cells, MC, and inflammatory MC and MC-derived MØ levels. In addition, inflammatory MC correlated positively with plasma Hcy levels and negatively with plasma s-adenosylmethionine-to-s-adenosylhomocysteine ratios. Finally, L-Hcy and D-glucose promoted inflammatory MC differentiation in primary mouse splenocytes, which was reversed by adenoviral DNA methyltransferase-1. HHcy and HG, individually and synergistically, accelerated atherosclerosis and in flammatory MC and MØ differentiation, at least in part, via DNA hypomethylation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism