[Rupture of the atherosclerotic plaque: is Chlamydia pneumoniae a possible agent?]

G Ital Cardiol (Rome). 2006 Dec;7(12):809-14.
[Article in Italian]


Background: The natural history of atherosclerosis has not clearly been elucidated yet. Some works reported that flogosis plays a role in plaque instability. Why does this inflammatory process start? We investigated the correlation between Chlamydia pneumoniae acute infection and plaque rupture.

Methods: We compared blood concentrations of IgM anti-Chlamydia pneumoniae in patients affected by acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and in patients affected by stable angina.

Results: Our results showed a minimal statistical difference, with a more positive value in patients with AMI. Subsequently, the group affected by AMI was divided into two subgroups with and without plaque rupture: the subgroup with plaque rupture showed a higher blood concentration of Chlamydia antibodies. This subgroup was also divided into two other subgroups according to blood white cell concentration: the subgroup with normal concentration of white blood cells showed the highest value of Chlamydia antibodies.

Conclusions: Chlamydia pneumoniae could play an important role in atherosclerotic plaque instability

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Angina Pectoris / immunology
  • Angina Pectoris / microbiology*
  • Angina Pectoris / pathology
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / blood
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Chlamydia Infections / complications*
  • Chlamydia Infections / immunology
  • Chlamydia Infections / pathology
  • Chlamydophila pneumoniae* / immunology
  • Coronary Artery Disease / immunology
  • Coronary Artery Disease / microbiology*
  • Coronary Artery Disease / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin M / blood
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / immunology
  • Myocardial Infarction / microbiology*
  • Myocardial Infarction / pathology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rupture, Spontaneous / microbiology


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Biomarkers
  • Immunoglobulin M