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Identification of Three Particular Morphological Phenotypes in Sporadic Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm: Phenotype III As Sporadic Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm Biomarker in Aged Individuals

  • Autori: Balistreri, C.; Maresi, E.; Pisano, C.; Di Maggio, F.; Vaccarino, L.; Caruso, C.; Lio, D.; Ruvolo, G.; Candore, G.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2014
  • Tipologia: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
  • OA Link:


Abstract Aging has a striking impact on the heart and the vascular system, particularly on the large elastic arteries (i.e., aorta), resulting in a multitude of changes at different structural and functional levels. As result, medial degeneration (MD) occurs. A characteristic example of MD is sporadic thoracic aortic aneurysm (S-TAA), whose patho-physiological mechanisms remain unclear. In this study, typical MD morphological phenotypes were researched in S-TAA cases and control aorta specimens by histopathological and immunohistochemical analyses. Three phenotypes (I, II, and III) were detected, but mainly the phenotype III was observed. Elevated cystic MD, plurifocal medial apoptosis, and increased metalloproteinase-9 amount characterize it. In addition, it was significantly correlated with the severity of elastic fragmentation, hypertension, and smoking, and particularly with advancing age. Thus, phenotype III might represent the typical MD phenotype associated with S-TAA in old people that have a major risk of aorta rupture and dissection independently on aneurysm diameter. This might permit the assumption that phenotype III with its typical histological abnormalities is an optimal biomarker of rupture and/or dissection in aged individuals and is useful both for applying different surgical approaches and providing appropriate surgical indications