Atherosclerosis is a multifactorial disease that preferentially develops in specific regions in the arterial tree. This characteristic is mainly attributed to the unique pattern of hemodynamic shear stress in vivo. High laminar shear stress (LS) found in straight lumen exerts athero-protective effects. Low or oscillatory shear stress (OS) present in regions of lesser curvature predisposes arterial intima to atherosclerosis. Shear stress-regulated endothelial function plays an important role in the process of atherosclerosis. Here, we profiled the whole transcriptome of primary human coronary arterial endothelial cellss (HCAECs) under different shear stress conditions using RNA sequencing. Among 16, 313 well-expressed genes we detected, 8,177 were differentially expressed in OS vs. LS conditions and 9,369 in ST vs. LS conditions. Notably, only 1,618 were differentially expressed in OS vs. ST conditions. Hierarchical clustering of ECs demonstrated a strong similarity between ECs under OS and ST conditions at transcriptome level. Subsequent pairwise heat mapping and principal component analysis further weighed on the similarity. At individual gene level, expressional analysis of representative well-known genes as well as novel genes showed a comparable amount at mRNA and protein levels in ECs under ST and OS conditions. In conclusion, the present work compared the whole transcriptome of HCAECs under different shear stress conditions. We found that cultured ECs are significantly different from those under LS condition. Given the revealed high similarities of endothelial transcriptome under OS and ST conditions, it may be helpful to understand the underlying mechanisms of OS-induced endothelial dysfunction from static cultured endothelial studies.
- endothelial cells
- shear stress
- Copyright © 2016, Physiological Genomics