Heart Institute scientists shine new light on role of autophagy in atherosclerosis

April 5, 2022

Scientists at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute (UOHI) have demonstrated that autophagy, the body’s natural way of removing unnecessary or dysfunctional cell components through a lysosome-dependent mechanism, is highly impaired in vascular smooth muscle foam cells, suggesting that targeting autophagy in these cells might represent a means to treat atherosclerosis.

The study, a collaborative effort between the research laboratories of Mireille Ouimet, PhD and Katey Rayner, PhD, is published in Circulation Research, an official journal of the American Heart Association.

Dr. Ouimet leads the Cardiovascular Metabolism and Cell Biology Laboratory, and Dr. Rayner, the Cardiometabolic microRNA Laboratory at the UOHI.

Read the study: Autophagy Is Differentially Regulated in Leukocyte and Nonleukocyte Foam Cells During Atherosclerosis

Discover CircRes podcast: Drs. Mireille Ouimet and Sabrina Robichaud (PhD candidate) of the UOHI discuss their study on the Discover CircRes podcast with host Cynthia St. Hilaire.

Media contact

Leigh B. Morris
Communications Officer
University of Ottawa Heart Institute
613-316-6409 (cell)