Prospective, randomised, double-blind trial investigating the effect of doxycycline on matrix metalloproteinase expression within atherosclerotic carotid plaques

Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Stroke, 2002, 33 (12), pp. 2858 - 2864
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Background and PurposeElevated levels of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), particularly MMP-1 and MMP-9, have been implicated in plaque rupture. It has been suggested that inhibition of MMPs may stabilize vulnerable atherosclerotic plaques and improve clinical outcome. The aim of the study was to investigate the ability of doxycycline, a nonspecific MMP inhibitor, to reduce MMP concentration in carotid atheroma. MethodsThe study design was a prospective, double-blind randomized trial. One hundred patients requiring carotid endarterectomy were randomized to receive 200 mg/d doxycycline or placebo for 2 to 8 weeks before surgery. During endarterectomy, carotid plaques were retrieved. The concentrations of MMPs and doxycycline were determined in the atherosclerotic tissue by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and high-performance liquid chromatography, respectively. Clinical events were recorded, as was the rate of preoperative embolization (transcranial Doppler).
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