Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 autoantibodies: further evidence for a role of the renin-angiotensin system in inflammation
Hypertension and Vascular Disease Center, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Medical Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC 27015, USA
Arthritis Research & Therapy 2010, 12:128 doi:10.1186/ar3052
See related research by Takahashi et al., http://arthritis-research.com/content/12/3/R85Published: 28 June 2010
Traditionally viewed as important in the regulation of blood pressure, the renin-angiotensin system - and specifically the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE)-angiotensin (Ang) II-AT1 receptor axis - may play a prominent role to promote inflammation and fibrosis. ACE2, a new component of the renin-angiotensin system, has emerged as a key enzyme that selectively degrades Ang II and generates Ang-(1-7), a bioactive peptide with anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic actions. Takahashi and colleagues demonstrate circulating titers of inhibitory autoantibodies against ACE2 in patients with systemic sclerosis. The current study reveals a potentially novel mechanism to attenuate the catalytic activity of ACE2, thereby promoting the actions of Ang II.