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      The protective role of estrogen and estrogen receptors in cardiovascular disease and the controversial use of estrogen therapy

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          Abstract

          Epidemiologic studies have previously suggested that premenopausal females have reduced incidence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) when compared to age-matched males, and the incidence and severity of CVD increases postmenopause. The lower incidence of cardiovascular disease in women during reproductive age is attributed at least in part to estrogen (E2). E2 binds to the traditional E2 receptors (ERs), estrogen receptor alpha (ERα), and estrogen receptor beta (ERβ), as well as the more recently identified G-protein-coupled ER (GPR30), and can exert both genomic and non-genomic actions. This review summarizes the protective role of E2 and its receptors in the cardiovascular system and discusses its underlying mechanisms with an emphasis on oxidative stress, fibrosis, angiogenesis, and vascular function. This review also presents the sexual dimorphic role of ERs in modulating E2 action in cardiovascular disease. The controversies surrounding the clinical use of exogenous E2 as a therapeutic agent for cardiovascular disease in women due to the possible risks of thrombotic events, cancers, and arrhythmia are also discussed. Endogenous local E2 biosynthesis from the conversion of testosterone to E2 via aromatase enzyme offers a novel therapeutic paradigm. Targeting specific ERs in the cardiovascular system may result in novel and possibly safer therapeutic options for cardiovascular protection.

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          Randomized trial of estrogen plus progestin for secondary prevention of coronary heart disease in postmenopausal women. Heart and Estrogen/progestin Replacement Study (HERS) Research Group.

          Observational studies have found lower rates of coronary heart disease (CHD) in postmenopausal women who take estrogen than in women who do not, but this potential benefit has not been confirmed in clinical trials. To determine if estrogen plus progestin therapy alters the risk for CHD events in postmenopausal women with established coronary disease. Randomized, blinded, placebo-controlled secondary prevention trial. Outpatient and community settings at 20 US clinical centers. A total of 2763 women with coronary disease, younger than 80 years, and postmenopausal with an intact uterus. Mean age was 66.7 years. Either 0.625 mg of conjugated equine estrogens plus 2.5 mg of medroxyprogesterone acetate in 1 tablet daily (n = 1380) or a placebo of identical appearance (n = 1383). Follow-up averaged 4.1 years; 82% of those assigned to hormone treatment were taking it at the end of 1 year, and 75% at the end of 3 years. The primary outcome was the occurrence of nonfatal myocardial infarction (MI) or CHD death. Secondary cardiovascular outcomes included coronary revascularization, unstable angina, congestive heart failure, resuscitated cardiac arrest, stroke or transient ischemic attack, and peripheral arterial disease. All-cause mortality was also considered. Overall, there were no significant differences between groups in the primary outcome or in any of the secondary cardiovascular outcomes: 172 women in the hormone group and 176 women in the placebo group had MI or CHD death (relative hazard [RH], 0.99; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.80-1.22). The lack of an overall effect occurred despite a net 11% lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol level and 10% higher high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level in the hormone group compared with the placebo group (each P<.001). Within the overall null effect, there was a statistically significant time trend, with more CHD events in the hormone group than in the placebo group in year 1 and fewer in years 4 and 5. More women in the hormone group than in the placebo group experienced venous thromboembolic events (34 vs 12; RH, 2.89; 95% CI, 1.50-5.58) and gallbladder disease (84 vs 62; RH, 1.38; 95% CI, 1.00-1.92). There were no significant differences in several other end points for which power was limited, including fracture, cancer, and total mortality (131 vs 123 deaths; RH, 1.08; 95% CI, 0.84-1.38). During an average follow-up of 4.1 years, treatment with oral conjugated equine estrogen plus medroxyprogesterone acetate did not reduce the overall rate of CHD events in postmenopausal women with established coronary disease. The treatment did increase the rate of thromboembolic events and gallbladder disease. Based on the finding of no overall cardiovascular benefit and a pattern of early increase in risk of CHD events, we do not recommend starting this treatment for the purpose of secondary prevention of CHD. However, given the favorable pattern of CHD events after several years of therapy, it could be appropriate for women already receiving this treatment to continue.
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            p53-induced inhibition of Hif-1 causes cardiac dysfunction during pressure overload.

            Cardiac hypertrophy occurs as an adaptive response to increased workload to maintain cardiac function. However, prolonged cardiac hypertrophy causes heart failure, and its mechanisms are largely unknown. Here we show that cardiac angiogenesis is crucially involved in the adaptive mechanism of cardiac hypertrophy and that p53 accumulation is essential for the transition from cardiac hypertrophy to heart failure. Pressure overload initially promoted vascular growth in the heart by hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (Hif-1)-dependent induction of angiogenic factors, and inhibition of angiogenesis prevented the development of cardiac hypertrophy and induced systolic dysfunction. Sustained pressure overload induced an accumulation of p53 that inhibited Hif-1 activity and thereby impaired cardiac angiogenesis and systolic function. Conversely, promoting cardiac angiogenesis by introducing angiogenic factors or by inhibiting p53 accumulation developed hypertrophy further and restored cardiac dysfunction under chronic pressure overload. These results indicate that the anti-angiogenic property of p53 may have a crucial function in the transition from cardiac hypertrophy to heart failure.
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              Disruption of coordinated cardiac hypertrophy and angiogenesis contributes to the transition to heart failure.

              Although increased external load initially induces cardiac hypertrophy with preserved contractility, sustained overload eventually leads to heart failure through poorly understood mechanisms. Here we describe a conditional transgenic system in mice characterized by the sequential development of adaptive cardiac hypertrophy with preserved contractility in the acute phase and dilated cardiomyopathy in the chronic phase following the induction of an activated Akt1 gene in the heart. Coronary angiogenesis was enhanced during the acute phase of adaptive cardiac growth but reduced as hearts underwent pathological remodeling. Enhanced angiogenesis in the acute phase was associated with mammalian target of rapamycin-dependent induction of myocardial VEGF and angiopoietin-2 expression. Inhibition of angiogenesis by a decoy VEGF receptor in the acute phase led to decreased capillary density, contractile dysfunction, and impaired cardiac growth. Thus, both heart size and cardiac function are angiogenesis dependent, and disruption of coordinated tissue growth and angiogenesis in the heart contributes to the progression from adaptive cardiac hypertrophy to heart failure.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                (310) 206-0345 , meghbali@ucla.edu
                Journal
                Biol Sex Differ
                Biol Sex Differ
                Biology of Sex Differences
                BioMed Central (London )
                2042-6410
                24 October 2017
                24 October 2017
                2017
                : 8
                Affiliations
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0000 9632 6718, GRID grid.19006.3e, Department of Anesthesiology, Division of Molecular Medicine, , David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California, Los Angeles, ; BH-160CHS, Los Angeles, CA 90095-7115 USA
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2156 6853, GRID grid.42505.36, Present address: Department of Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology/Liver, , Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, ; Los Angeles, CA 90033 USA
                Article
                152
                10.1186/s13293-017-0152-8
                5655818
                29065927
                e2719f96-9d19-4bad-9493-e27c7f2478e1
                © The Author(s). 2017

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Funding
                Funded by: FundRef http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/100000968, American Heart Association;
                Award ID: AHA-17PRE33420159
                Award Recipient :
                Funded by: FundRef http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/100000002, National Institutes of Health;
                Award ID: R01HL131182-01A1
                Award ID: T32-GM065823
                Award ID: HD00722
                Award Recipient :
                Funded by: AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION
                Award ID: AHA16GRANT27760058
                Award Recipient :
                Categories
                Review
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2017

                Human biology
                estrogen,estrogen receptor alpha,estrogen receptor beta,gpr30,cardiovascular disease,hormone replacement therapy,fibrosis,angiogenesis,oxidative stress,vasodilation

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