Molecular signatures of atherosclerotic plaques: An up-dated panel of protein related markers

J Proteomics . 2020 Jun 15;221:103757. doi: 10.1016/j.jprot.2020.103757. Epub 2020 Apr 1.

Fecha de la publicación: 01/04/2020

Autor: S Eslava-Alcon (1), M J Extremera-García (1), A González-Rovira (1), A Rosal-Vela (2), M Rojas-Torres (1), L Beltran-Camacho (1), I Sanchez-Gomar (2), M Jiménez-Palomares (1), J A Alonso-Piñero (1), R Conejero (3), E Doiz (3), J Olarte (4), A Foncubierta-Fernández (5), E Lozano (6), F J García-Cozar (1), M Rodríguez-Piñero (3), G Alvarez-Llamas (7), M C Duran-Ruiz (8)

Palabras clave: Atherosclerosis, Biomarkers, Proteomics, Secretome, Vulnerable plaques



1Biomedicine, Biotechnology and Public Health Department, Cadiz University, Spain; Institute of Biomedical Research Cadiz (INIBICA), Spain.

2Institute of Biomedical Research Cadiz (INIBICA), Spain.

3Angiology & Vascular Surgery Unit, Hospital Universitario Puerta del Mar, Cadiz, Spain.

4Angiology & Vascular Surgery Unit, Virgen Macarena Hospital, Seville, Spain.

5Institute of Biomedical Research Cadiz (INIBICA), Spain; UGC Joaquín Pece, Distrito Sanitario Bahía de Cádiz-La Janda, Cádiz, Spain.

6Institute of Biomedical Research Cadiz (INIBICA), Spain; Internal Medicine Unit, Hospital de Jerez, Jerez, Spain.

7Immunology Department, IIS-Fundación Jimenez Diaz-UAM, Madrid, Spain; REDINREN, Madrid, Spain.

8Biomedicine, Biotechnology and Public Health Department, Cadiz University, Spain; Institute of Biomedical Research Cadiz (INIBICA), Spain. Electronic address:


Atherosclerosis remains the leading cause of ischemic syndromes such as myocardial infarction or brain stroke, mainly promoted by plaque rupture and subsequent arterial blockade. Identification of vulnerable or high-risk plaques constitutes a major challenge, being necessary to identify patients at risk of occlusive events in order to provide them with appropriate therapies. Clinical imaging tools have allowed the identification of certain structural indicators of prone-rupture plaques, including a necrotic lipidic core, intimal and adventitial inflammation, extracellular matrix dysregulation, and smooth muscle cell depletion and micro-calcification. Additionally, alternative approaches focused on identifying molecular biomarkers of atherosclerosis have also been applied. Among them, proteomics has provided numerous protein markers currently investigated in clinical practice. In this regard, it is quite uncertain that a single molecule can describe plaque rupture, due to the complexity of the process itself. Therefore, it should be more accurate to consider a set of markers to define plaques at risk. Herein, we propose a selection of 76 proteins, from classical inflammatory to recently related markers, all of them identified in at least two