Detection of Chlamydia pneumoniae TWAR in human coronary atherectomy tissues

J Infect Dis. 1995 Aug;172(2):585-8. doi: 10.1093/infdis/172.2.585.


Chlamydia pneumoniae TWAR has been associated with coronary heart disease by seroepidemiologic studies and direct detection of the organism in atheromatous lesions of coronary arteries and aorta. In this study, 38 fresh tissue specimens from patients with coronary artery lesions that were treated by directional coronary atherectomy were tested for C. pneumoniae. Twenty-three specimens were from patients with primary lesions and 15 were from patients with restenoses. C. pneumoniae was detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), immunocytochemical stain (ICC), or both in 20 of 38 specimens. Using cell identity markers, the organism was localized to macrophages. Ultrastructural evidence of the organism was found in the 2 specimens examined by transmission electron microscopy, which were also positive by both ICC and PCR. C. pneumoniae was found more frequently in tissues from restenoses than in primary lesions (P = .17). There was no relation between the frequency of detection of the organism and C. pneumoniae-specific antibody titers.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / blood
  • Antigens, Bacterial / analysis
  • Atherectomy, Coronary*
  • Chlamydophila pneumoniae / immunology
  • Chlamydophila pneumoniae / isolation & purification*
  • Coronary Disease / microbiology*
  • Coronary Disease / pathology
  • Coronary Disease / surgery
  • Coronary Vessels / microbiology
  • Coronary Vessels / pathology
  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
  • Microscopy, Electron, Scanning Transmission
  • Middle Aged
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • DNA, Bacterial