Microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1 (mPGES-1) in myeloid and vascular cells differentially regulates the response to vascular injury, reflecting distinct effects of mPGES-1-derived PGE2 in these cell types on discrete cellular components of the vasculature. The cell selective roles of mPGES-1 in atherogenesis are unknown. Mice lacking mPGES-1 conditionally in myeloid cells (Mac-mPGES-1-KOs), vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC-mPGES-1-KOs), or endothelial cells (EC-mPGES-1-KOs) were crossed into hyperlipidemic low-density lipoprotein receptor-deficient animals. En face aortic lesion analysis revealed markedly reduced atherogenesis in Mac-mPGES-1-KOs, which was concomitant with a reduction in oxidative stress, reflective of reduced macrophage infiltration, less lesional expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), and lower aortic expression of NADPH oxidases and proinflammatory cytokines. Reduced oxidative stress was reflected systemically by a decline in urinary 8,12-iso-iPF2α-VI. In contrast to exaggeration of the response to vascular injury, deletion of mPGES-1 in VSMCs, ECs, or both had no detectable phenotypic impact on atherogenesis. Macrophage foam cell formation and cholesterol efflux, together with plasma cholesterol and triglycerides, were unchanged as a function of genotype. In conclusion, myeloid cell mPGES-1 promotes atherogenesis in hyperlipidemic mice, coincident with iNOS-mediated oxidative stress. By contrast, mPGES-1 in vascular cells does not detectably influence atherogenesis in mice. This strengthens the therapeutic rationale for targeting macrophage mPGES-1 in inflammatory cardiovascular diseases.
Keywords: atherosclerosis; prostanoid.