Tertov VV, Orekhov AN, Sayadyan KS, Serebrennikov SG, Kacharava AG, Lyakishev AA, Smirnov VN
Atherosclerosis 1990 Apr 81:3 183-9
Blood serum of most patients with coronary heart disease (CHD) caused a 2-5-fold increase in the total cholesterol content of smooth muscle cells cultured from unaffected human aortic intima, i.e. possessed an atherogenic potential manifested in culture. Removal of immunoglobulins G and M from an atherogenic serum brought about a fall in its atherogenic potential. The serum deficient in immunoglobulins A retained its ability to induce the cholesterol accumulation in cells. Treatment of the CHD patients' serum with 2.5% polyethylene glycol 6000 removed the circulating immune complexes. The serum subjected to this treatment lost its atherogenicity, i.e. failed to increase the cholesterol content in cultured cells. Incubation of smooth muscle cells derived from human aortic intima with circulating immune complexes isolated from an atherogenic patients' serum caused a 1.5-3-fold rise in the intracellular cholesterol. Blood sera of most (89%) CHD patients was characterized by a high cholesterol content in circulating immune complexes. More than 75% of healthy subjects and patients without stenosis of coronary arteries had low level of cholesterol in immune complexes. Blood sera atherogenicity manifested in culture directly correlated with the cholesterol level of circulating immune complexes (r = 0.90). These findings suggest that the atherogenicity of CHD patients blood serum is due to cholesterol-containing immune complexes.