, Volume 21, Issue 2-3, pp 129-137

Interleukin-8 and its receptor CXCR2 in atherosclerosis

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The participation of inflammatory cells in atherosc lerosis is a well-known process that involves numerous molecules including chemotactic cytokines (chemokines) for their entry into the vessel wall. Although the C-C chemokine monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 and its receptor, CCR2, have been implicated in atherosclerosis, the role of the classic C-X-C chemokine, interleukin-8 (KC/growth-related oncogene α in mice) and its receptor XCCR2 has not been studied in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis. Our research has shown that CXC R2 is strongly expressed on macrophages (Mф) in atherosclerotic lesion. This CXCR2 expression is proatherogenic in that CXCR2 deficiency significantly reduces the progression of advanced atherosclerosis in mice. Although the mechanism still needs to be worked out, it appears that CXCR2 expression on lesion Mф is essential for these cells to be retained in the lesion.