Biomarkers and location of atherosclerosis: Matrix metalloproteinase-2 may be related to intracranial atherosclerosis

Sang Beom Jeon, Sail Chun, Smi Choi-Kwon, Hyun Sook Chi, Hyun Wook Nah, Sun U. Kwon, Won Ki Kim, Jong S. Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Various biomarkers are linked with the pathophysiology of atherosclerosis. We hypothesized that these factors may be associated with the location and burden of cerebral atherosclerosis. Methods: We evaluated 177 consecutive patients with chronic (>6 months) ischemic stroke: 68 with small vessel occlusion (SVO) and 109 with large-artery atherosclerosis (LAA), with the latter further sub-classified into 80 patients with intracranial atherosclerosis (ICAS) and 29 with extracranial atherosclerosis (ECAS). The number of ≥50% steno-occlusions on magnetic resonance angiography was used to assess the burden of atherosclerosis. Serum concentrations of the biomarkers (matrix metalloproteinases (MMP)-2 and -9, homocysteine, interleukin (IL)-6, tumor necrosis factor-α, C-reactive protein, adiponectin, leptin, resistin, free fatty acid, and lipoprotein(a)) and the metabolic syndrome were measured in each study subject. Results: Decreased plasma concentrations of MMP-2 (p = 0.020) and homocysteine (p = 0.038) were more closely associated with ICAS than with ECAS, whereas increased IL-6 concentrations were related to severe (≥4 steno-occlusions) atherosclerosis (p = 0.031). Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that the lowest tertile of MMP-2 was independently associated with ICAS (OR 4.84, 95% CI 1.29-18.19, p = 0.022). Conclusion: Low MMP-2 plasma levels are associated with intracranial location of cerebral atherosclerosis, suggesting that MMP-2 may play a role in the development of ICAS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)442-447
Number of pages6
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Aug


  • Atherosclerosis
  • Biological markers
  • Homocysteine
  • Interkeukin-6
  • Matrix metalloproteinase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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