Researchers uncover new cause of abdominal aortic aneurysm

April 04, 2019

Researchers have discovered that a family of lipids (fats) contribute to the development of a serious aortic disease, by driving clotting in the blood vessel wall.

The findings could lead to the development of new treatments for this potentially life threatening condition.

The team, led by researchers at Cardiff University, in collaboration with colleagues at Oxford and Erlangen, discovered that the lipids, called eoxPL, promote the development of abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) - a disease of the aorta where inflammation causes damage and can ultimately lead to rupture.

When AAA ruptures, uncontrolled internal bleeding can lead to death within minutes; only about 2 in 10 people survive. Many aneurysms are not detected until they rupture, and for those that are, treatments to stop them progressing are limited. Men aged 65 and over are most at risk of developing AAAs.

Professor Valerie O'Donnell, Co-Director of Systems Immunity Research Institute at Cardiff University, who led the research, said: "After discovering new lipids that promote blood clotting we wondered if they also played a part in AAA, as we know the condition is linked to blood clotting.

"Our research found that these lipids in circulating blood cells did promote AAA formation in the vessel wall, because they directly regulate blood clotting.

"Unexpectedly, when administered into the blood system, the same lipids were also found to have preventative properties because rather than being made by circulating blood cells in the vessel wall they instead mop up clotting factors, causing them to be removed from circulation and preventing disease."

Professor Jeremy Pearson, Associate Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation, which funded the research, added: "An AAA is not usually found before a life-threatening rupture occurs, and there is no routine treatment to prevent them. However, screening is offered to men from 65 years of age, which involves a simple 10-15 minute ultrasound scan.

"This research gives us a new understanding of the biological links between blood clotting and the development of an AAA. The findings also suggest that to stop blood clotting from happening, whether directly or by blocking the formation of these lipids, could be an effective way to reduce the risk of rupture in people where screening reveals an AAA."

The study 'Phospholipid membranes drive abdominal aortic aneurysm development through stimulating coagulation factor activity' is published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and a review article on the new lipids was also published this month in Science Signaling.
-end-


Cardiff University

Related Blood Clotting Articles from Brightsurf:

Pitt trauma experts aim to reduce deaths by providing blood-clotting agent
The study found the drug can help the most severely injured trauma patients.

Possible blood-clotting mechanism in COVID-19 found
Why so many COVID-19 patients get blood clots (thrombosis) remains uncertain.

COVID-19 causes 'hyperactivity' in blood-clotting cells
Changes in blood platelets triggered by COVID-19 could contribute to the onset of heart attacks, strokes, and other serious complications in some patients who have the disease, according to University of Utah Health scientists.

Blood clotting abnormalities reveal COVID-19 patients at risk for thrombotic events
When researchers from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, used a combination of two specific blood-clotting tests, they found critically ill patients infected with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) who were at high risk for developing renal failure, venous blood clots, and other complications associated with blood clots, such as stroke.

Blood clotting a significant cause of death in patients with COVID-19
A study led by clinician scientists at RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences has found that Irish patients admitted to hospital with severe COVID-19 infection are experiencing abnormal blood clotting that contributes to death in some patients.

Muscle protein abundant in the heart plays key role in blood clotting during heart attack
A prevalent heart protein known as cardiac myosin, which is released into the body when a person suffers a heart attack, can cause blood to thicken or clot--worsening damage to heart tissue, a new study shows.

Clotting problem
New research into why some people's blood doesn't clot well identified defects in the platelet-making process, where mutant cells aren't behaving properly.

Study finds trend toward benefit in using blood-clotting agent for bleeding stroke
There are few treatment options for bleeding stroke. There was a trend towards reduced growth of brain bleeds in those treated with the antifibrinolytic agent tranexamic acid within 4.5 hours of stroke onset, compared to those treated with placebo.

Study: Blood-clotting protein and blood platelets promote immune evasion, cancer progression
A new study led by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - Arthur G.

Laying out directions for future of reliable blood clotting molecule models
Blood clots have long been implicated in heart attacks and strokes.

Read More: Blood Clotting News and Blood Clotting Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.