Bio

Clinical Focus


  • Pulmonary Hypertension
  • Clinical Trial, Phase II
  • Biomarkers
  • Vasoreactivity in pulmonary hypertension as a marker of vascular remodeling
  • Pulmonary Disease

Academic Appointments


Honors & Awards


  • Manuscript Award, Cardiovascular Institute at Stanford (Feb 2014)
  • Poster Award, Excellence Cluster Cardio-Pulmonary System (ECCPS) and Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute (PVRI) (Jan 2014)
  • Helmholtz International Research Group Award, Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen, Germany (2013-2016)
  • Seed Grant- BMP signaling in the RV, Cardiovascular Institute Stanford (2013-2014)
  • Seed Grant - Phase II Clinical Trial, Wall Center of Pulmonary Vascular Disease (2012-2014)
  • Seed Grant - Phase II Clinical Trial, SPARK and Spectrum Stanford (2012-2014)
  • Seed Grant - Small Molecule High Throughout Screen, Wall Center of Pulmonary Vascular Disease (2012)
  • Winner of Poster competition, Cardiovascular Institute Stanford (Sept 2012)
  • Supplemental award of the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA), Pulmonary Hypertension Association (2011 - 2016)
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, Pulmonary Hypertension Association (2003-2005)
  • K08 Career development award, NIH (2011-2016)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations


  • Pulmonary Circulation Program Committee, American Thoracic Society (2013 - Present)
  • Member at large, European Respiratory Society (2000 - Present)
  • Member at large, American Thoracic Society (1998 - Present)

Professional Education


  • Fellowship:Stanford Hospital and Clinics - Critical Care (2009) CA
  • Fellowship:Stanford University (2008) CA
  • Fellowship:Lucile Packard Children's Hospital (2006) CA
  • Residency:Medizinische Hochschule Hannover (2002) Germany
  • Medical Education:University Hospital Freiburg (1995) Germany

Patents


  • Edda Spiekerkoetter. "United States Patent 61481317 Low-Dose FK506 for the treatment of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension", Leland Stanford Junior University

Research & Scholarship

Current Research and Scholarly Interests


My research focuses on the importance of the Bone Morphogenetic Protein Receptor 2 (BMPR2) signaling pathway in pulmonary, pulmonary-vascular as well as cardiac disease.

In 2000 two independent groups discovered mutations in the BMPR2 pathway as the genetic basis for pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Over the past years more mutations either directly involved in the BMPR2 pathway (Endoglin, ALk1, Smad9) or indirectly linked to the BMPR2 pathway (Caveolin-1) have been discovered, emphasizing the central role of BMPR2 signaling in familial PAH. It was subsequently found that reduced BMPR2 expression and signaling seems to be a feature of other sporadic or idiopathic forms of PAH.

Hypothesizing that increasing BMPR2 signaling might improve PAH, we have performed a High-Throughput Screen of FDA approved drugs to find BMPR2 activators and have identified the immuno-suppressive drug FK506 (Tacrolimus) as as the main activator.
We have subsequently shown that FK506 could rescue endothelial dysfunction in PAH, and prevent and reverse PAH in rodent models of experimental PAH (Spiekerkoetter JCI 2013).

This discovery has lead to the initiation of a phase II clinical trial to test the safety, tolerability and efficacy of low-dose FK506 in PAH at Stanford (http://www.clinicaltrials.gov NCT01647945)

My current research focuses on :
1. Novel ways how to modulate BMPR2 signaling (small molecule HTS screen, identifying novel modifier genes)
2. Evaluating the importance of BMPR2 signaling in the development of Right Ventricular Hypertrophy (RVH) and failure, which is the leading cause of death in PAH (Collaboration with Dres Sushma Reddy and Daniel Bernstein, Pediatric Cardiology, Stanford).
3. Evaluating the importance of BMPR2 signaling in vascular development in neonatal chronic lung disease (Collaboration with Dr. Anne Hilgendorff, Helmholz Institute, Muenchen, Germany).

Clinical Trials


  • FK506 (Tacrolimus) in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Recruiting

    Mutations in bone morphogenetic protein receptor 2 (BMPR2) are present in >80% of familial and ~20% of sporadic pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) patients. Furthermore dysfunctional BMP signaling is a general feature of pulmonary hypertension even in non-familial PAH. We therefore hypothesized that increasing BMP signaling might prevent and reverse the disease. We screened > 3500 FDA approved drugs for their propensity to increase BMP signaling and found FK506 (Tacrolimus) to be a strong activator of BMP signaling. Tacrolimus restored normal function of pulmonary artery endothelial cells, prevented and reversed experimental PAH in mice and rats. Given that Tacrolimus is already FDA approved with a known side-effect profile, it is an ideal candidate drug to use in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension. The aims of our trial are: 1. Establish the Safety of FK506 in patients with PAH. 2. Evaluate the Efficacy of FK506 in PAH 3. Identify ideal candidates for future FK506 phase III clinical trial.

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Teaching

Publications

Journal Articles


  • Reduced BMPR2 expression induces GM-CSF translation and macrophage recruitment in humans and mice to exacerbate pulmonary hypertension. journal of experimental medicine Sawada, H., Saito, T., Nickel, N. P., Alastalo, T., Glotzbach, J. P., Chan, R., Haghighat, L., Fuchs, G., Januszyk, M., Cao, A., Lai, Y., Perez, V. d., Kim, Y., Wang, L., Chen, P., Spiekerkoetter, E., Mitani, Y., Gurtner, G. C., Sarnow, P., Rabinovitch, M. 2014; 211 (2): 263-280

    Abstract

    Idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH [IPAH]) is an insidious and potentially fatal disease linked to a mutation or reduced expression of bone morphogenetic protein receptor 2 (BMPR2). Because intravascular inflammatory cells are recruited in IPAH pathogenesis, we hypothesized that reduced BMPR2 enhances production of the potent chemokine granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) in response to an inflammatory perturbation. When human pulmonary artery (PA) endothelial cells deficient in BMPR2 were stimulated with tumor necrosis factor (TNF), a twofold increase in GM-CSF was observed and related to enhanced messenger RNA (mRNA) translation. The mechanism was associated with disruption of stress granule formation. Specifically, loss of BMPR2 induced prolonged phospho-p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) in response to TNF, and this increased GADD34-PP1 phosphatase activity, dephosphorylating eukaryotic translation initiation factor (eIF2?), and derepressing GM-CSF mRNA translation. Lungs from IPAH patients versus unused donor controls revealed heightened PA expression of GM-CSF co-distributing with increased TNF and expanded populations of hematopoietic and endothelial GM-CSF receptor ? (GM-CSFR?)-positive cells. Moreover, a 3-wk infusion of GM-CSF in mice increased hypoxia-induced PAH, in association with increased perivascular macrophages and muscularized distal arteries, whereas blockade of GM-CSF repressed these features. Thus, reduced BMPR2 can subvert a stress granule response, heighten GM-CSF mRNA translation, increase inflammatory cell recruitment, and exacerbate PAH.

    View details for DOI 10.1084/jem.20111741

    View details for PubMedID 24446489

  • A case of recurrent pericardial constriction presenting with severe pulmonary hypertension. Pulmonary circulation Brunner, N. W., Ramachandran, K., Kudelko, K. T., Sung, Y. K., Spiekerkoetter, E., Yang, P. C., Zamanian, R. T., Perez, V. d. 2013; 3 (2): 436-439

    Abstract

    Chronic constrictive pericarditis (CP) is a relatively rare condition in which the pericardium becomes fibrotic and noncompliant, eventually resulting in heart failure due to impaired ventricular filling. The only curative treatment is pericardiectomy. Classically, CP does not usually cause severe pulmonary hypertension. When attempting to differentiate CP from restrictive cardiomyopathy, the presence of severely elevated pulmonary arterial pressure is used as a diagnostic criterion ruling against CP. We present a case of proven recurrent pericardial constriction following pericardiectomy presenting with severe pulmonary hypertension.

    View details for DOI 10.4103/2045-8932.114780

    View details for PubMedID 24015347

  • FK506 activates BMPR2, rescues endothelial dysfunction, and reverses pulmonary hypertension. The Journal of clinical investigation Spiekerkoetter, E., Tian, X., Cai, J., Hopper, R. K., Sudheendra, D., Li, C. G., El-Bizri, N., Sawada, H., Haghighat, R., Chan, R., Haghighat, L., de Jesus Perez, V., Wang, L., Reddy, S., Zhao, M., Bernstein, D., Solow-Cordero, D. E., Beachy, P. A., Wandless, T. J., Dijke, P. T., Rabinovitch, M. 2013

    Abstract

    Dysfunctional bone morphogenetic protein receptor-2 (BMPR2) signaling is implicated in the pathogenesis of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). We used a transcriptional high-throughput luciferase reporter assay to screen 3,756 FDA-approved drugs and bioactive compounds for induction of BMPR2 signaling. The best response was achieved with FK506 (tacrolimus), via a dual mechanism of action as a calcineurin inhibitor that also binds FK-binding protein-12 (FKBP12), a repressor of BMP signaling. FK506 released FKBP12 from type I receptors activin receptor-like kinase 1 (ALK1), ALK2, and ALK3 and activated downstream SMAD1/5 and MAPK signaling and ID1 gene regulation in a manner superior to the calcineurin inhibitor cyclosporine and the FKBP12 ligand rapamycin. In pulmonary artery endothelial cells (ECs) from patients with idiopathic PAH, low-dose FK506 reversed dysfunctional BMPR2 signaling. In mice with conditional Bmpr2 deletion in ECs, low-dose FK506 prevented exaggerated chronic hypoxic PAH associated with induction of EC targets of BMP signaling, such as apelin. Low-dose FK506 also reversed severe PAH in rats with medial hypertrophy following monocrotaline and in rats with neointima formation following VEGF receptor blockade and chronic hypoxia. Our studies indicate that low-dose FK506 could be useful in the treatment of PAH.

    View details for PubMedID 23867624

  • Loss of adenomatous poliposis coli-a3 integrin interaction promotes endothelial apoptosis in mice and humans. Circulation research de Jesus Perez, V. A., Yuan, K., Orcholski, M. E., Sawada, H., Zhao, M., Li, C. G., Tojais, N. F., Nickel, N., Rajagopalan, V., Spiekerkoetter, E., Wang, L., Dutta, R., Bernstein, D., Rabinovitch, M. 2012; 111 (12): 1551-1564

    Abstract

    Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is characterized by progressive elevation in pulmonary pressure and loss of small pulmonary arteries. As bone morphogenetic proteins promote pulmonary angiogenesis by recruiting the Wnt/?-catenin pathway, we proposed that ?-catenin activation could reduce loss and induce regeneration of small pulmonary arteries (PAs) and attenuate PH.This study aims to establish the role of ?-catenin in protecting the pulmonary endothelium and stimulating compensatory angiogenesis after injury.To assess the impact of ?-catenin activation on chronic hypoxia-induced PH, we used the adenomatous polyposis coli (Apc(Min/+)) mouse, where reduced APC causes constitutive ?-catenin elevation. Surprisingly, hypoxic Apc(Min/+) mice displayed greater PH and small PA loss compared with control C57Bl6J littermates. PA endothelial cells isolated from Apc(Min/+) demonstrated reduced survival and angiogenic responses along with a profound reduction in adhesion to laminin. The mechanism involved failure of APC to interact with the cytoplasmic domain of the ?3 integrin, to stabilize focal adhesions and activate integrin-linked kinase-1 and phospho Akt. We found that PA endothelial cells from lungs of patients with idiopathic PH have reduced APC expression, decreased adhesion to laminin, and impaired vascular tube formation. These defects were corrected in the cultured cells by transfection of APC.We show that APC is integral to PA endothelial cells adhesion and survival and is reduced in PA endothelial cells from PH patient lungs. The data suggest that decreased APC may be a cause of increased risk or severity of PH in genetically susceptible individuals.

    View details for DOI 10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.112.267849

    View details for PubMedID 23011394

  • Safety and Efficacy of Transition from Systemic Prostanoids to Inhaled Treprostinil in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension AMERICAN JOURNAL OF CARDIOLOGY Perez, V. A., Rosenzweig, E., Rubin, L. J., Poch, D., Bajwa, A., Park, M., Jain, M., Bourge, R. C., Kudelko, K., Spiekerkoetter, E., Liu, J., Hsi, A., Zamanian, R. T. 2012; 110 (10): 1546-1550

    Abstract

    Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a disease characterized by increased pulmonary pressures and chronic right heart failure. Therapies for moderate and severe PAH include subcutaneous (SQ) and intravenous (IV) prostanoids that improve symptoms and quality of life. However, treatment compliance can be limited by severe side effects and complications related to methods of drug administration. Inhaled prostanoids, which offer the advantage of direct delivery of the drug to the pulmonary circulation without need for invasive approaches, may serve as an alternative for patients unable to tolerate SQ/IV therapy. In this retrospective cohort study we collected clinical, hemodynamic, and functional data from 18 clinically stable patients with World Health Organization group I PAH seen in 6 large national PAH centers before and after transitioning to inhaled treprostinil from IV/SQ prostanoids. Before transition 15 patients had been receiving IV or SQ treprostinil (mean dose 73 ng/kg/min) and 3 patients had been on IV epoprostenol (mean dose 10 ng/kg/min) for an average duration of 113 80 months. Although most patients who transitioned to inhaled treprostinil demonstrated no statistically significant worsening of hemodynamics or 6-minute walk distance, a minority demonstrated worsening of New York Heart Association functional class over a 7-month period. In conclusion, although transition of patients from IV/SQ prostanoids to inhaled treprostinil appears to be well tolerated in clinically stable patients, they should remain closely monitored for signs of clinical decompensation.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.amjcard.2012.07.012

    View details for Web of Science ID 000311523900026

  • Neutrophil Elastase Is Produced by Pulmonary Artery Smooth Muscle Cells and Is Linked to Neointimal Lesions AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PATHOLOGY Kim, Y., Haghighat, L., Spiekerkoetter, E., Sawada, H., Alvira, C. M., Wang, L., Acharya, S., Rodriguez-Colon, G., Orton, A., Zhao, M., Rabinovitch, M. 2011; 179 (3): 1560-1572

    Abstract

    Previously, we reported that murine gammaherpesvirus-68 (M1-MHV-68) induces pulmonary artery (PA) neointimal lesions in S100A4-overexpressing, but not in wild-type (C57), mice. Lesions were associated with heightened lung elastase activity and PA elastin degradation. We now investigate a direct relationship between elastase and PA neointimal lesions, the nature and source of the enzyme, and its presence in clinical disease. We found an association exists between the percentage of PAs with neointimal lesions and elastin fragmentation in S100A4 mice 6 months after viral infection. Confocal microscopy documented the heightened susceptibility of S100A4 versus C57 PA elastin to degradation by elastase. A transient increase in lung elastase activity occurs in S100A4 mice, 7 days after M1-MHV-68, unrelated to inflammation or viral load and before neointimal lesions. Administration of recombinant elafin, an elastase-specific inhibitor, ameliorates early increases in serine elastase and attenuates later development of neointimal lesions. Neutrophils are the source of elevated elastase (NE) in the S100A4 lung, and NE mRNA and protein levels are greater in PA smooth muscle cells (SMC) from S100A4 mice than from C57 mice. Furthermore, elevated NE is observed in cultured PA SMC from idiopathic PA hypertension versus that in control lungs and localizes to neointimal lesions. Thus, PA SMC produce NE, and heightened production and activity of NE is linked to experimental and clinical pulmonary vascular disease.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.ajpath.2011.05.051

    View details for Web of Science ID 000298307300049

    View details for PubMedID 21763677

  • BMP promotes motility and represses growth of smooth muscle cells by activation of tandem Wnt pathways JOURNAL OF CELL BIOLOGY Perez, V. A., Ali, Z., Alastalo, T., Ikeno, F., Sawada, H., Lai, Y., Kleisli, T., Spiekerkoetter, E., Qu, X., Rubinos, L. H., Ashley, E., Amieva, M., Dedhar, S., Rabinovitch, M. 2011; 192 (1): 171-188

    Abstract

    We present a novel cell-signaling paradigm in which bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2) consecutively and interdependently activates the wingless (Wnt)-?-catenin (?C) and Wnt-planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling pathways to facilitate vascular smooth muscle motility while simultaneously suppressing growth. We show that BMP-2, in a phospho-Akt-dependent manner, induces ?C transcriptional activity to produce fibronectin, which then activates integrin-linked kinase 1 (ILK-1) via ?4-integrins. ILK-1 then induces the Wnt-PCP pathway by binding a proline-rich motif in disheveled (Dvl) and consequently activating RhoA-Rac1-mediated motility. Transfection of a Dvl mutant that binds ?C without activating RhoA-Rac1 not only prevents BMP-2-mediated vascular smooth muscle cell motility but promotes proliferation in association with persistent ?C activity. Interfering with the Dvl-dependent Wnt-PCP activation in a murine stented aortic graft injury model promotes extensive neointima formation, as shown by optical coherence tomography and histopathology. We speculate that, in response to injury, factors that subvert BMP-2-mediated tandem activation of Wnt-?C and Wnt-PCP pathways contribute to obliterative vascular disease in both the systemic and pulmonary circulations.

    View details for DOI 10.1083/jcb.201008060

    View details for Web of Science ID 000287778600015

    View details for PubMedID 21220513

  • S100A4 and Bone Morphogenetic Protein-2 Codependently Induce Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell Migration via Phospho-Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase and Chloride Intracellular Channel 4 CIRCULATION RESEARCH Spiekerkoetter, E., Guignabert, C., Perez, V. D., Alastalo, T., Powers, J. M., Wang, L., Lawrie, A., Ambartsumian, N., Schmidt, A., Berryman, M., Ashley, R. H., Rabinovitch, M. 2009; 105 (7): 639-U37

    Abstract

    S100A4/Mts1 is implicated in motility of human pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (hPASMCs), through an interaction with the RAGE (receptor for advanced glycation end products).We hypothesized that S100A4/Mts1-mediated hPASMC motility might be enhanced by loss of function of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) receptor (BMPR)II, observed in pulmonary arterial hypertension.Both S100A4/Mts1 (500 ng/mL) and BMP-2 (10 ng/mL) induce migration of hPASMCs in a novel codependent manner, in that the response to either ligand is lost with anti-RAGE or BMPRII short interference (si)RNA. Phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase is induced by both ligands and is required for motility by inducing matrix metalloproteinase 2 activity, but phospho-extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 is blocked by anti-RAGE and not by BMPRII short interference RNA. In contrast, BMPRII short interference RNA, but not anti-RAGE, reduces expression of intracellular chloride channel (CLIC)4, a scaffolding molecule necessary for motility in response to S100A4/Mts1 or BMP-2. Reduced CLIC4 expression does not interfere with S100A4/Mts1 internalization or its interaction with myosin heavy chain IIA, but does alter alignment of myosin heavy chain IIA and actin filaments creating the appearance of vacuoles. This abnormality is associated with reduced peripheral distribution and/or delayed activation of RhoA and Rac1, small GTPases required for retraction and extension of lamellipodia in motile cells.Our studies demonstrate how a single ligand (BMP-2 or S100A4/Mts1) can recruit multiple cell surface receptors to relay signals that coordinate events culminating in a functional response, ie, cell motility. We speculate that this carefully controlled process limits signals from multiple ligands, but could be subverted in disease.

    View details for DOI 10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.109.205120

    View details for Web of Science ID 000270150800006

    View details for PubMedID 19713532

  • Reactivation of gamma HV68 induces neointimal lesions in pulmonary arteries of S100A4/Mts1-overexpressing mice in association with degradation of elastin AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-LUNG CELLULAR AND MOLECULAR PHYSIOLOGY Spiekerkoetter, E., Alvira, C. M., Kim, Y., Bruneau, A., Pricola, K. L., Wang, L., Ambartsumian, N., Rabinovitch, M. 2008; 294 (2): L276-L289

    Abstract

    S100A4/Mts-overexpressing mice have thick elastic laminae and mild pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), and the occasional older mouse develops occlusive neointimal lesions and perivascular inflammation. We hypothesized that a vasculotropic virus could induce neointimal lesions in the S100A4/Mts1 mouse by facilitating breakdown of elastin and migration and proliferation of smooth muscle cells. To test this hypothesis, we infected S100A4/Mts1 mice with gammaherpesvirus 68 (gammaHV68). We observed, 6 mo after gammaHV68 [4 x 10(3) plaque-forming units (PFU)], perivascular inflammation in 10/15 S100A4/Mts1 mice and occlusive neointimal formation in 3/10 mice, accompanied by striking degradation of elastin. We then compared the early response after high-dose gammaHV68 (4 x 10(6) PFU) in C57Bl/6 and S100A4/Mts1 mice. In S100A4/Mts1 mice only, significant PAH, muscularization of distal vessels, and elastase activity were observed 6 wk after gammaHV68. These features resolved by 3 mo without neointimal formation. We therefore infected mice with the M1-gammaHV68 strain that reactivates from latency with higher efficiency and observed neointimal lesions at 3 mo in 2/5 C57Bl/6 (5-9% of vessels) and in 5/5 S100A4/Mts1 mice (13-40% of vessels) accompanied by mild PAH, heightened lung elastase activity, and intravascular viral expression. This suggested that enhanced generation of elastin peptides in S100A4/Mts1 mice may promote increased viral entry in the vessel wall. Using S100A4/Mts1 PA organ culture, we showed, in response to elastase activity, heightened production of elastin peptides associated with invasion of inflammatory cells and intravascular viral antigen. We therefore propose that early viral access to the vessel wall may be a critical determinant of the extent of vascular pathology following reactivation.

    View details for DOI 10.1152/ajplung.00414.2007

    View details for Web of Science ID 000253067400017

    View details for PubMedID 18083765

  • Experience with inhaled iloprost and bosentan in portopulmonary hypertension EUROPEAN RESPIRATORY JOURNAL Hoeper, M. M., Seyfarth, H. J., Hoefflken, G., Wirtz, H., Spielkerkoetter, E., Pletz, M. W., Welte, T., Halank, M. 2007; 30 (6): 1096-1102

    Abstract

    Novel treatments, such as prostanoids or endothelin receptor antagonists, have been introduced for various forms of pulmonary arterial hypertension, but the long-term effects of these treatments on portopulmonary hypertension (PPHT) are unknown. In a retrospective analysis, the present authors assessed the safety and efficacy of inhaled iloprost, a prostacyclin analogue, and bosentan, an endothelin receptor antagonist, in patients with PPHT. In total, 31 consecutive patients with Child class A or B cirrhosis and severe PPHT were treated for up to 3 yrs with either inhaled iloprost (n = 13) or bosentan (n = 18), and the effects on exercise capacity, haemodynamics and survival were evaluated. In the iloprost group, the survival rates at 1, 2 and 3 yrs were 77, 62 and 46%, respectively. In the bosentan group, the respective survival rates were 94, 89 and 89%. Event-free survival rates, i.e. survival without transplantation, right heart failure or clinical worsening requiring the introduction of a new treatment for pulmonary hypertension, was also significantly better in the bosentan group. Bosentan had significantly better effects than inhaled iloprost on exercise capacity, as determined by the 6-min walk test, as well as on haemodynamics. Both treatments proved to be safe, especially in regards of liver function. In the present series of patients with well-preserved liver function and severe portopulmonary hypertension, treatment with both inhaled iloprost and bosentan appeared to be safe. Patients treated with bosentan had higher survival rates, but prospective controlled studies are required to confirm these findings.

    View details for DOI 10.1183/09031936.00032407

    View details for Web of Science ID 000251521800012

    View details for PubMedID 17652314

  • Mts1/S100A4 stimulates human pulmonary artery smooth muscle cell migration through multiple signaling pathways CHEST Spiekerkoetter, E., Lawrie, A., Merklinger, S., Ambartsumian, N., Lukanidin, D., Schmidt, A. A., Rabbiovitch, M. 2005; 128 (6): 577S-577S

    View details for Web of Science ID 000234371400021

    View details for PubMedID 16373840

  • Goal-oriented treatment and combination therapy for pulmonary arterial hypertension EUROPEAN RESPIRATORY JOURNAL Hoeper, M. M., Markevych, I., Spiekerkoetter, E., Welte, T., Niedermeyer, J. 2005; 26 (5): 858-863

    Abstract

    Combination therapy may improve outcome in patients with severe pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). PAH patients were treated according to a goal-oriented therapeutic strategy. Patients who did not reach the treatment goals with monotherapy received combination treatment according to a predefined strategy, including bosentan, sildenafil and inhaled iloprost. Intravenous iloprost and lung transplantation were reserved for treatment failures. End points were overall survival, transplantation-free survival, and survival free from transplantation and intravenous prostanoid treatment. Between January 2002 and December 2004, 123 consecutive patients with PAH were treated according to the novel approach. Survival at 1, 2 and 3 yrs was 93.0, 83.1 and 79.9%, respectively, which was significantly better than the survival of a historical control group, as well as the expected survival. Compared to the historical control group, the use of combination treatment also significantly improved the combined end point of death, lung transplantation and need for intravenous iloprost treatment. In conclusion, a therapeutic approach utilising combinations of bosentan, sildenafil and inhaled iloprost in conjunction with a goal-oriented treatment strategy provides acceptable long-term results in patients with severe pulmonary arterial hypertension, and reduces the need for intravenous prostaglandin treatment and lung transplantation.

    View details for DOI 10.1183/09031936.05.00075305

    View details for Web of Science ID 000233224400017

    View details for PubMedID 16264047

  • Increased fibulin-5 and elastin in S100A4/Mts1 mice with pulmonary hypertension CIRCULATION RESEARCH Merklinger, S. L., Wagner, R. A., Spiekerkoetter, E., Hinek, A., Knutsen, R. H., Kabir, M. G., Desai, K., Hacker, S., Wang, L. L., Cann, G. M., Ambartsumian, N. S., Lukanidin, E., Bernstein, D., Husain, M., Mecham, R. P., Starcher, B., Yanagisawa, H., Rabinovitch, M. 2005; 97 (6): 596-604

    Abstract

    Transgenic mice overexpressing the calcium binding protein, S100A4/Mts1, occasionally develop severe pulmonary vascular obstructive disease. To understand what underlies this propensity, we compared the pulmonary vascular hemodynamic and structural features of S100A4/Mts1 with control C57Bl/6 mice at baseline, following a 2-week exposure to chronic hypoxia, and after 1 and 3 months "recovery" in room air. S100A4/Mts1 mice had greater right ventricular systolic pressure and right ventricular hypertrophy at baseline, which increased further with chronic hypoxia and was sustained after 3 months "recovery" in room air. These findings correlated with a heightened response to acute hypoxia and failure to vasodilate with nitric oxide or oxygen. S100A4/Mts1 mice, when compared with C57Bl/6 mice, also had impaired cardiac function judged by reduced ventricular elastance and decreased cardiac output. Despite higher right ventricular systolic pressures with chronic hypoxia, S100A4/Mts1 mice did not develop more severe PVD, but in contrast to C57Bl/6 mice, these features did not regress on return to room air. Microarray analysis of lung tissue identified a number of genes differentially upregulated in S100A4/Mts1 versus control mice. One of these, fibulin-5, is a matrix component necessary for normal elastin fiber assembly. Fibulin-5 was localized to pulmonary arteries and associated with thickened elastic laminae. This feature could underlie attenuation of pulmonary vascular changes in response to elevated pressure, as well as impaired reversibility.

    View details for DOI 10.1161/01.RES.00000182425.49768.8a

    View details for Web of Science ID 000231896500013

    View details for PubMedID 16109920

  • Interdependent serotonin transporter and receptor pathways regulate S100A4/Mts1, a gene associated with pulmonary vascular disease CIRCULATION RESEARCH Lawrie, A., Spiekerkoetter, E., Martinez, E. C., Ambartsumian, N., Sheward, W. J., MacLean, M. R., Harmar, A. J., Schmidt, A. M., Lukanidin, E., Rabinovitch, M. 2005; 97 (3): 227-235

    Abstract

    Heightened expression of the S100 calcium-binding protein, S100A4/Mts1, is observed in pulmonary vascular disease. Loss of serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]) receptors or of the serotonin transporter (SERT) attenuates pulmonary hypertension in animals, and polymorphisms causing gain of SERT function are linked to clinical pulmonary vascular disease. Because 5-HT induces release of S100beta, we investigated the codependence of 5-HT receptors and SERT in regulating S100A4/Mts1 in human pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (hPA-SMC). 5-HT elevated S100A4/Mts1 mRNA levels and increased S100A4/Mts1 protein in hPA-SMC lysates and culture media. S100A4/Mts1 in the culture media stimulated proliferation and migration of hPA-SMC in a manner dependent on the receptor for advanced glycation end products. Treatment with SB224289 (selective antagonist of 5-HT1B), fluoxetine (SERT inhibitor), SERT RNA-interference, and iproniazid (monoamine oxidase-A inhibitor), blocked 5-HT-induced S100A4/Mts1. 5-HT signaling mediated phosphorylation (p) of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (pERK1/2), but pERK1/2 nuclear translocation depended on SERT, monoamine oxidase activity, and reactive oxygen species. Nuclear translocation of pERK1/2 was required for pGATA-4-mediated transcription of S100A4/Mts1. These data provide evidence for a mechanistic link between the 5-HT pathway and S100A4/Mts1 in pulmonary hypertension and explain how the 5-HT1B receptor and SERT are codependent in regulating S100A4/Mts1.

    View details for DOI 10.1161/01.RES.0000176025.57706.1e

    View details for Web of Science ID 000230995100006

    View details for PubMedID 16002749

  • Bosentan treatment in patients with primary pulmonary hypertension receiving nonparenteral prostanoids EUROPEAN RESPIRATORY JOURNAL Hoeper, M. M., Taha, N., Bekjarova, A., Gatzke, R., Spiekerkoetter, E. 2003; 22 (2): 330-334

    Abstract

    Primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH) is a life-threatening disease. Nonparenteral prostanoids, i.e. aerosolised iloprost or oral beraprost sodium show beneficial therapeutic effects but are not sufficiently active in all patients with this devastating disease. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether the endothelin-receptor antagonist bosentan is safe and effective in patients with PPH already receiving nonparenteral prostanoids. The effect of bosentan as add-on medication was studied in 20 patients with PPH, who received either inhaled iloprost (n=9) or oral beraprost (n=11) for a median period of 16+/-13 months, by means of the 6-min walk test and cardiopulmonary exercise testing. After 3 months of administration of bosentan in addition to prostanoids, the walking distance in the 6-min walk test increased by 58+/-43 m. Cardiopulmonary exercise testing revealed an increase in maximal oxygen consumption from 11.0+/-2.3 to 13.8+/-3.6 mL x kg(-1) x min(-1) accompanied by significant improvements in anaerobic threshold, oxygen pulse and minute ventilation/carbon dioxide production slope. Peak systolic blood pressure increased from 120+/-17 to 139+/-21 mmHg. Combination treatment was well tolerated by all patients. It is concluded that the addition of the endothelin-receptor antagonist bosentan to inhaled iloprost or oral beraprost therapy appears to be safe for patients with primary pulmonary hypertension, resulting in a marked increase in exercise capacity. Therefore, rigorous studies should address whether combination treatment is more effective than either therapeutic intervention alone.

    View details for DOI 10.1183/09031936.03.00008003

    View details for Web of Science ID 000184865400026

    View details for PubMedID 12952269

  • Effects of inhaled salbutamol in primary pulmonary hypertension EUROPEAN RESPIRATORY JOURNAL Spiekerkoetter, E., Fabel, H., Hoeper, M. M. 2002; 20 (3): 524-528

    Abstract

    Although lung function is grossly normal in patients with primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH), mild-to-moderate peripheral airflow obstruction can be found in the majority of patients with this disease. Therefore, beta2-agonists may affect pulmonary function, blood gases and haemodynamics in patients with PPH. Pulmonary function testing, blood gas measurements and right heart catheterisation was performed in 22 patients with PPH and the acute effects of inhaled salbutamol (0.2 mg) were measured. Salbutamol caused an increase in the forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) from 2446+/-704 to 2550+/-776 mL. The mean expiratory flow at 50% of the vital capacity (MEF50) rose from 58+/-17 to 66+/-21% pred. The pulmonary artery pressures remained unchanged after inhalation of salbutamol, but the cardiac output increased significantly from 3.9+/-1.4 to 4.2+/-1.4 L x min(-1) accompanied by significant increases in stroke volume and mixed venous oxygen saturation as well as a significant decrease in pulmonary vascular resistance. The arterial oxygen tension rose from 9+/-2.4 kPa (68+/-18 mmHg) at baseline to 9.7+/-2.8 kPa (73+/-21 mmHg) after inhalation of salbutamol, the alveolo-arterial oxygen gradient values improved from 6+/-2.5 kPa (45+/-19 mmHg) to 5.1+/-2.9 kPa (38+/-22 mmHg), respectively. Inhaled salbutamol has beneficial acute effects on pulmonary function, blood gases and haemodynamics in patients with primary pulmonary hypertension.

    View details for DOI 10.1183/09031936.02.02572001

    View details for Web of Science ID 000178187100005

    View details for PubMedID 12358324

  • Intravenous iloprost for treatment failure of aerosolised iloprost in pulmonary arterial hypertension EUROPEAN RESPIRATORY JOURNAL Hoeper, M. M., Spiekerkoetter, E., Westerkamp, V., Gatzke, R., Fabel, H. 2002; 20 (2): 339-343

    Abstract

    Treatment with aerosolised iloprost, a prostacyclin analogue, has beneficial effects in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). It is unclear if patients, whose clinical condition deteriorates under treatment with aerosolised iloprost, benefit from switching to continuous intravenous iloprost. The current authors report on 16 patients with severe PAH who received continuous intravenous iloprost after primary or secondary failure of treatment with aerosolised iloprost. Determinants of efficacy were survival, New York Heart Association (NYHA) class, and walking distance in the 6-min walk test. Of 93 patients with PAH treated with aerosolised iloprost, 16 required switching to intravenous iloprost for clinical deterioration. These patients had severe right heart failure with a cardiac index of 1.6+/-0.2 L x min(-1) x m(-2) and a mixed-venous oxygen saturation of 52+/-6%. Five of these patients showed no improvement and eventually died. Three patients had further deterioration in NYHA class and exercise capacity; two of them underwent lung transplantation; the third patient is still alive. Eight patients showed marked clinical improvement; one underwent lung transplantation and the others are currently alive and stable. In the latter group of patients, the walking distance in the 6-min walk test increased from 205+/-94 to 329+/-59 m. It was not possible to identify clinical or haemodynamic factors that would predict whether switching from inhaled to intravenous iloprost would have a beneficial effect. In patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension who deteriorated while being treated with aerosolised iloprost, switching to continuous intravenous iloprost caused substantial improvement in exercise capacity in eight of 16 patients but could not prevent progression of pulmonary hypertension in the remaining eight patients. Since it was impossible to predict the individual effects of this approach, intravenous prostaglandin treatment should be considered in pulmonary arterial hypertension patients who deteriorate while receiving iloprost aerosol.

    View details for DOI 10.1183/09031936.02.02462001

    View details for Web of Science ID 000177641400017

    View details for PubMedID 12212965

  • [Long-term treatment of primary pulmonary hypertension with inhaled iloprost]. Pneumologie (Stuttgart, Germany) Hoeper, M. M., Schwarze, M., Ehlerding, S., Adler-Schuermeyer, A., Spiekerkoetter, E., Niedermeyer, J., Hamm, M., Fabel, H. 2001; 55 (1): 38-43

    Abstract

    Continuous intravenous infusion of prostacyclin is an effective treatment for primary pulmonary hypertension. This approach, however, requires the insertion of a permanent central venous catheter with the potential risk of serious complications. Recently, administration of aerosolized iloprost, a stable prostacyclin analogue, has been introduced as an alternative therapy for severe pulmonary hypertension.We evaluated the effects of treatment with aerosolized iloprost over a one-year period on exercise capacity and hemodynamic variables in patients with primary pulmonary hypertension.Twenty-four patients with primary pulmonary hypertension received aerosolized iloprost at a cumulative daily dose of 100 to 150 micrograms for at least one year. The mean (+/- SD) walking distance in the 6-min-walk test increased from 278 +/- 96 meters at base line to 363 +/- 135 meters after 12 months (P < 0.0001). During the same period, the mean pulmonary artery pressure declined from 59 +/- 10 mmHg to 52 +/- 15 mmHg (P = 0.006), the cardiac output increased from 3.8 +/- 1.4 l/min to 4.4 +/- 1.3 l/min (P = 0.02), and the pulmonary vascular resistance declined from 1.205 +/- 467 dynes.s.cm-5 to 925 +/- 469 dynes.s.cm-5 (P = 0.0003). Treatment was generally well tolerated and except for mild coughing, minor headache and jaw pain in some patients, no side effects occurred.Long-term treatment with aerosolized iloprost is safe and has sustained effects on exercise capacity and pulmonary hemodynamics in patients with primary pulmonary hypertension.

    View details for PubMedID 11236355

  • Long-term treatment of primary pulmonary hypertension with aerosolized iloprost, a prostacyclin analogue. NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE Hoeper, M. M., Schwarze, M., Ehlerding, S., Adler-Schuermeyer, A., Spiekerkoetter, E., Niedermeyer, J., Hamm, M., Fabel, H. 2000; 342 (25): 1866-1870

    Abstract

    Continuous intravenous infusion of epoprostenol (prostacyclin) is an effective treatment for primary pulmonary hypertension. This approach requires the insertion of a permanent central venous catheter, with the associated risk of serious complications. Recently, aerosolized iloprost, a stable prostacyclin analogue, has been introduced as an alternative therapy for severe pulmonary hypertension.We evaluated the effects of aerosolized iloprost on exercise capacity and hemodynamic variables over a one-year period in patients with primary pulmonary hypertension.Twenty-four patients with primary pulmonary hypertension received aerosolized iloprost at a daily dose of 100 or 150 microg for at least one year. The mean (+/-SD) distance covered in the six-minute walk test increased from 278+/-96 m at base line to 363+/-135 m after 12 months (P<0.001). During the same period, the mean pulmonary arterial pressure before the inhalation of iloprost declined from 59+/-10 mm Hg to 52+/-15 mm Hg (P=0.006), cardiac output increased from 3.8+/-1.4 liters per minute to 4.4+/-1.3 liters per minute (P=0.02), and pulmonary vascular resistance declined from 1205+/-467 dyn x sec x cm(-5) to 925+/-469 dyn x sec x cm(-5) (P<0.001). The treatment was generally well tolerated, except for mild coughing, minor headache, and jaw pain in some patients.Long-term treatment with aerosolized iloprost is safe and has sustained effects on exercise capacity and pulmonary hemodynamics in patients with primary pulmonary hypertension.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000087704700003

    View details for PubMedID 10861321

  • Prevalence of malignancies after lung transplantation TRANSPLANTATION PROCEEDINGS Spiekerkoetter, E., Krug, N., Hoeper, M., Wiebe, K., Hamm, M., Harringer, W., Haverich, A., Fabel, H. 1998; 30 (4): 1523-1524

    View details for Web of Science ID 000074150800245

    View details for PubMedID 9636620

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