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Mitoxantrone suppresses vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) proliferation and balloon injury-induced neointima formation: An in vitro and in vivo study

Yuan Teng, Ziyi Wang, Wen Li, Jianxing Yu, Zhen Shan, Chun Liang, Shenming Wang


Neointima formation, which occurs after vascular injury due to vascular disease or interventions such as angioplasty and stent placement, is a complex process that involves multiple molecular and cellular mechanisms. The inhibition of neointima formation is vital to prevent restenosis of blood vessels. In the present study, we investigated whether the systemic administration of mitoxantrone can inhibit neointima formation, and evaluated the underlying mechanisms under in vitro and in vivo experimental conditions. In vitro, rat and human vascular smooth muscle cells (RVSMCs and HVSMCs) were stimulated with platelet-derived growth factor-BB (PDGF-BB) and treated with mitoxantrone or DMSO as a control. In vivo, 54 male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to carotid artery balloon injury and then intravenously administered with mitoxantrone. Cell proliferation was determined using the CCK-8 assay. Cell cycle analysis was performed using flow cytometry, and protein expression was analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. We used monoclonal mouse anti-bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) antibody for the detection of BrdU and anti-Topoisomerase II antibody for staining Type II topoisomerase (Topo II), one week after the ballon injury. In both RVSMCs and HVSMCs, mitoxantrone treatment induced Topo II degradation, as well as suppressed DNA replication, cell cycle progression, and VSMC proliferation. A reduction in intimal hyperplasia, intimal-to-medial area ratio, and Topo II level was observed in mitoxantrone-treated rats, as compared to the control (saline) group. Overall, our results indicate that systemic administration of mitoxantrone can reduce neointimal hyperplasia and, thus, represents a suitable option for restenosis treatment.


Neointima formation; mitoxantrone; vascular smooth muscle cells; VSMCs; Type II topoisomerase; balloon injury model; proliferation

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