Objective: To determine the fractalkine expression in the aorta of ApoE (-/-) mice and the effect of high-dose aspirin intervention on fractalkine expression and atherosclerotic lesion formation.
Methods: Twenty-one male ApoE gene knockout mice were randomized into three groups to receive either placebo in addition to normal mice chow (n = 7), placebo in addition to a high-fat diet (n = 7), or aspirin (58 mg/kg/d) in addition to a high-fat diet (n = 7). After 12 weeks of study, the mice were euthanized and serum cholesterol, thromboxane B(2), and 6-keto-PGF(1alpha) were examined. Fractalkine and cyclooxygenase expression in aorta were measured and the atherosclerotic lesion analyzed.
Results: Pathology image analysis showed that the atherosclerotic plaque was the most extensive in the high-fat diet group while the addition of aspirin greatly reduced the severity of the plaque. Both RT-PCR analysis and immunohistochemical analysis showed that fractalkine expression was the strongest in the high-fat diet group and was significantly decreased by aspirin treatment. Serum thromboxane B(2) was lowered by aspirin while 6-keto-PGF(1alpha) and cholesterol remained unchanged.
Conclusions: The results of our study indicate that high dose aspirin can improve the atherosclerotic lesion and suppress the fractalkine expression in murine aorta.