Degenerative aortic valve disease and diabetes: Implications for a link between proteoglycans and diabetic disorders in the aortic valve.

Research paper by Mareike M Barth, Jessica I JI Selig, Svenja S Klose, Antje A Schomakers, Lena S LS Kiene, Silja S Raschke, Udo U Boeken, Payam P Akhyari, Jens W JW Fischer, Artur A Lichtenberg

Indexed on: 20 Dec '18Published on: 20 Dec '18Published in: Diabetes & vascular disease research


Degenerative aortic valve disease in combination with diabetes is an increasing burden worldwide. There is growing evidence that particularly small leucine-rich proteoglycans are involved in the development of degenerative aortic valve disease. Nevertheless, the role of these molecules in this disease in the course of diabetes has not been elucidated in detail and previous studies remain controversial. Therefore, the aim of this study is to broaden the knowledge about small leucine-rich proteoglycans in degenerative aortic valve disease and the influence of diabetes and hyperglycaemia on aortic valves and valvular interstitial cells is examined. Analyses were performed using reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction, Western blot, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, (immuno)histology and colorimetric assays. We could show that biglycan, but not decorin and lumican, is upregulated in degenerated human aortic valve cusps. Subgroup analysis reveals that upregulation of biglycan is stage-dependent. In vivo, loss of biglycan leads to stage-dependent calcification and also to migratory effects on interstitial cells within the extracellular matrix. In late stages of degenerative aortic valve disease, diabetes increases the expression of biglycan in aortic valves. In vitro, the combinations of hyperglycaemic with pro-degenerative conditions lead to an upregulation of biglycan. In conclusion, biglycan represents a potential link between degenerative aortic valve disease and diabetes.