BACKGROUND: Human ascending thoracic aortic aneurysms (ATAAs) are life threatening and constitute a leading cause of mortality in the United States. Previously, we demonstrated that collagens α2(V) and α1(XI) mRNA and protein expression levels are significantly increased in ATAAs.<br /><br />METHODS AND RESULTS: In this report, the authors extended these preliminary studies using high-throughput proteomic analysis to identify additional biomarkers for use in whole blood real-time RT-PCR analysis to allow for the identification of ATAAs before dissection or rupture. Human ATAA samples were obtained from male and female patients aged 65 ± 14 years. Both bicuspid and tricuspid aortic valve patients were included and compared with nonaneurysmal aortas (mean diameter 2.3 cm). Five biomarkers were identified as being suitable for detection and identification of ATAAs using qRT-PCR analysis of whole blood. Analysis of 41 samples (19 small, 13 medium-sized, and 9 large ATAAs) demonstrated the overexpression of 3 of these transcript biomarkers correctly identified 79.4% of patients with ATAA of ≥4.0 cm (P<0.001, sensitivity 0.79, CI=0.62 to 0.91; specificity 1.00, 95% CI=0.42 to 1.00).<br /><br />CONCLUSION: A preliminary transcript biomarker panel for the identification of ATAAs using whole blood qRT-PCR analysis in men and women is presented.
Black, K. M., Masuzawa, A., Hagberg, R. C., Khabbaz, K. R., Trovato, M. E., Rettagliati, V. M., … McCully, J. D. (2013). Preliminary biomarkers for identification of human ascending thoracic aortic aneurysm. Journal of the American Heart Association, 2(6). https://doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.113.000138