Acta Neuropathologica

, Volume 77, Issue 1, pp 55–60 | Cite as

Altered expression of collagen type VI in brain vessels of patients with chronic hypertension

A comparison with the distribution of collagen IV and procollagen III
  • W. Roggendorf
  • H. Opitz
  • D. Schuppan
Regular Papers


The vascular extracellular matrix (ECM) plays an important role in the histopathology of cerebral microcirculation, but its characterization is still incomplete. For that reason we investigated paraffin-embedded and cryostat sections of intracerebral and meningeal vessels from eight normotensive and six hypertensive humans using monospecific affinity-purified polyclonal antibodies against human/monkey amino-terminal procollagen I+III peptide (P I P, P III P), collagen IV (7-S and NC1 domains), VI, and laminin (P 1 fragment) by applying peroxidase-antiperoxidase-and alkaline phosphatase-antialkaline phosphatase techniques. In normotensives, laminin and collagen IV were codistributed in the basal lamina of meningeal and intraparenchymal vessels. Collagen VI was only present in the adventitia of meningeal vessels and larger intraparenchymal arteries and veins, whereas it was absent from cortical vessels including capillaries. Intensive staining for collagen VI was observed in the choroid plexus, the superficial glia and sheath of cranial nerves. In hypertensives, the basement membrane constituents laminin and collagen IV appeared ubiquitously increased. Here, collagen VI was also deposited in the broadened vascular intima and media of larger arteries and in cortical vessels. In both groups collagen VI and P III P appeared to be codistributed. Our results indicate that significant qualitative changes in ECM of cerebral blood vessels are taking place during the development of hypertension, such as (1) an atypical deposition or an increase of collagen VI which by interconnecting collagen fibrils (I and III) might exert a stabilizing (sclerosing) function in the ECM, and (2) a thickening of vascular basement membranes caused by an accumulation of its major components laminin and collagen IV.

Key words

Collagen type VI Brain vessels Hypertension Immunohistology Arteriosclerosis 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. Roggendorf
    • 1
  • H. Opitz
    • 1
  • D. Schuppan
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut für HirnforschungUniversität TübingenTübingenFederal Republic of Germany
  2. 2.Abteilung für Medizin, Medizinzentrum SteglitzFreie UniversitätBerlin

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