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      Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress Effector CCAAT/Enhancer‐binding Protein Homologous Protein (CHOP) Regulates Chronic Kidney Disease–Induced Vascular Calcification

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          Cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis and vascular calcification are a major cause of death in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Recently, the long‐awaited results of the Study of Heart and Renal Protection trial were reported. This large randomized clinical trial found that an extensive cholesterol‐lowering therapy through the combination of simvastatin and ezetimibe significantly reduced cardiovascular diseases in a wide range of patients with CKD. However, the mechanism by which this cholesterol‐lowering therapy reduces CKD‐dependent vascular diseases remains elusive. The objective of the present study was to determine the contribution of the oxysterol‐induced pro‐apoptotic transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer‐binding protein homologous protein (CHOP) on the pathogenesis of CKD‐dependent cardiovascular diseases through endoplasmic reticulum stress signaling.

          Methods and Results

          CKD increased levels of serum oxysterols such as 7‐ketocholesterol in human patients and ApoE −/− mice. Treatment with simvastatin plus ezetimibe strongly reduced levels of serum oxysterols and attenuated CKD‐dependent atherosclerosis, vascular cell death, vascular calcification, and cardiac dysfunction. This therapy also reduced aortic endoplasmic reticulum stress induced by CKD. The short hairpin RNA‐mediated knockdown of CHOP and activating transcription factor‐4 in vascular smooth muscle cells attenuated oxysterol‐induced mineralization, osteogenic differentiation, and endoplasmic reticulum stress. In addition, CHOP deficiency protected ApoE −/− mice from CKD‐dependent vascular calcification, cardiac dysfunction, and vascular cell death.


          These data reveal that the cholesterol‐lowering therapy of simvastatin plus ezetimibe attenuates CKD‐dependent vascular diseases through a reduction of oxysterol‐mediated endoplasmic reticulum stress. CHOP plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of CKD‐dependent vascular calcification.

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          Most cited references 41

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          Serum creatinine concentration is widely used as an index of renal function, but this concentration is affected by factors other than glomerular filtration rate (GFR). To develop an equation to predict GFR from serum creatinine concentration and other factors. Cross-sectional study of GFR, creatinine clearance, serum creatinine concentration, and demographic and clinical characteristics in patients with chronic renal disease. 1628 patients enrolled in the baseline period of the Modification of Diet in Renal Disease (MDRD) Study, of whom 1070 were randomly selected as the training sample; the remaining 558 patients constituted the validation sample. The prediction equation was developed by stepwise regression applied to the training sample. The equation was then tested and compared with other prediction equations in the validation sample. To simplify prediction of GFR, the equation included only demographic and serum variables. Independent factors associated with a lower GFR included a higher serum creatinine concentration, older age, female sex, nonblack ethnicity, higher serum urea nitrogen levels, and lower serum albumin levels (P < 0.001 for all factors). The multiple regression model explained 90.3% of the variance in the logarithm of GFR in the validation sample. Measured creatinine clearance overestimated GFR by 19%, and creatinine clearance predicted by the Cockcroft-Gault formula overestimated GFR by 16%. After adjustment for this overestimation, the percentage of variance of the logarithm of GFR predicted by measured creatinine clearance or the Cockcroft-Gault formula was 86.6% and 84.2%, respectively. The equation developed from the MDRD Study provided a more accurate estimate of GFR in our study group than measured creatinine clearance or other commonly used equations.
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            The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) responds to the accumulation of unfolded proteins in its lumen (ER stress) by activating intracellular signal transduction pathways - cumulatively called the unfolded protein response (UPR). Together, at least three mechanistically distinct arms of the UPR regulate the expression of numerous genes that function within the secretory pathway but also affect broad aspects of cell fate and the metabolism of proteins, amino acids and lipids. The arms of the UPR are integrated to provide a response that remodels the secretory apparatus and aligns cellular physiology to the demands imposed by ER stress.
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              Integrating the mechanisms of apoptosis induced by endoplasmic reticulum stress.

               Ira Tabas,  David Ron (2011)
              The ability to respond to perturbations in endoplasmic reticulum (ER) function is a fundamentally important property of all cells, but ER stress can also lead to apoptosis. In settings of chronic ER stress, the associated apoptosis may contribute to pathophysiological processes involved in a number of prevalent diseases, including neurodegenerative diseases, diabetes, atherosclerosis and renal disease. The molecular mechanisms linking ER stress to apoptosis are the topic of this review, with emphases on relevance to pathophysiology and integration and complementation among the various apoptotic pathways induced by ER stress. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved

                Author and article information

                J Am Heart Assoc
                J Am Heart Assoc
                Journal of the American Heart Association: Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Disease
                Blackwell Publishing Ltd
                June 2014
                24 June 2014
                : 3
                : 3
                [1 ]Division of Renal Diseases and Hypertension, University of Colorado Denver, Aurora, CO (S.M.A., M.M., A.L.K., S.J.S., R.M., K.J., J.K., M.C., M.L., M.M.)
                [2 ]Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, University of Colorado Denver, Aurora, CO (M.M.)
                [3 ]Division of Cardiology, University of Colorado Denver, Aurora, CO (K.M.D.D., M.A.C., T.A.M.K.)
                Author notes
                Correspondence to: Makoto Miyazaki, PhD, Division of Renal Diseases and Hypertension, Department of Medicine, University of Colorado Denver, 12700 East 19th Avenue C281, Aurora, CO 80045. E‐mail: Makoto.Miyazaki@

                Dr Miyazaki‐Anzai and Dr Masuda contributed equally to this work.

                Accompanying Figures S1 through S4 and Tables S1 through S3 are available at

                © 2014 The Authors. Published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wiley Blackwell.

                This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‐NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.

                Original Research
                Kidney in Cardiovascular Disease


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