HICART – Effects of hypoxia on molecular pathways related to increased cardiovascular risk in patients with sleep apnea and their reversal by therapy

Project title APVV-0000-11: HICART - Effects of Hypoxia on Molecular Pathways related to Increased Cardiovascular Risk in Patients with Sleep Apnea and their Reversal by Therapy
 Project leader prof. MUDr. Ružena Tkáčová, DrSc.
Research team 1. Clinical disciplines:

a) Respirology: Prof. Tkáčová (supervision), young researchers: Drs. Pobeha, Joppa, Dorková, PhD, Drs. Brúsik, Tiško;

b) Cardiology: Prof. Valočík (supervision), Dr. Rašiová, PhD, Vachalcová;

c) Diabetology: Prof. Tkáč (supervision), Dr. Kozárová, young invest.: Dr. Javorský, PhD trainees: Drs. Babjaková, Fabiánová, Bolerázska

2. Molecular Biology: prof. Šalagovič (supervision), Drs. Habalová, Klimčáková,PhD trainee: Dr. Hermanová

3. Modeling: Dr. Bachárová, DrSc. (supervision), Dr. Mateášik

4. Biochemistry: Doc. Víglaský (supervision), Drs. Mašlanková,Petrášová, Molčányiová; PhD: Dr. Tlučková, Tóthová

5. Biophysics: Dr. Štroffeková (supervision), PhD trainee: Mgr. Maslaňáková

Time period 7/2012 – 12/2015
Description The prevalence of symptomatic obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is about 4% in adult men and 2% in women. Repetitive episodes of nocturnal hypoxemia resulting from OSA result in chronic intermittent hypoxia (CIH), leading to sympathetic activation, and alterations in humoral, thrombotic, inflammatory and metabolic pathways that play an important role in the progression of atherosclerosis and overt cardiovascular disorders.Prospective findings indicate that untreated sleep apnea predicts increased blood pressure (BP), hypertension, stroke, depression, and mortality.The aim is to clarify:a) Effect of interactions between genetic background and hypoxiaon dyslipidemias, hypertension and endothelial functionb) Relationships between chronic intermittent hypoxia and cardiometabolic functional parameters (endothelial and left ventricular dysfunction, insulin resistance) in patients with obstructive sleep apnea c) Molecular mechanisms of hypoxia-induced activation of proatherogenic inflammatory and apoptotic pathways d) Reversal of hypoxia - induced activation of inflammatory, apoptotic and metabolic processes by nonpharmacological and pharmacological therapies: from cells to patientsResults of the project and new insights into that field of research may substantially contribute to better understanding of pathogenesis, clinical manifestations, early diagnosis,  beneficial effects of  therapy, and to the search for novel therapeutic strategies for patients with sleep apnea.
Main findings