Angiotensin converting enzyme 2 and atherosclerosis

Yutang Wang, Chris Tikellis, Merlin C. Thomas, Jonathan Golledge

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) is a homolog of angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) which generates angiotensin II from angiotensin I. ACE, its product angiotensin II and the downstream angiotensin type I receptor are important components of the renin-angiotensin system (RAS). Angiotensin II, the most important component of the RAS, promotes the development of atherosclerosis. The identification of ACE2 in 2000 opened a new chapter of research on the regulation of the RAS. ACE2 degrades pro-atherosclerotic angiotensin II and generates anti-atherosclerotic angiotensin 1-7. In this review, we explored the importance of ACE2 in protecting experimental animals from developing atherosclerosis and its involvement in human atherosclerosis. We also examined the published evidence assessing the importance of ACE2 in different cell types relevant to atherosclerosis and putative underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms linking ACE2 with protection from atherosclerosis. ACE2 shifts the balance from angiotensin II to angiotensin 1-7 inhibiting the progression of atherosclerosis in animal models. 

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-8
Number of pages6
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Angiotensin 1-7
  • Angiotensin converting enzyme 2
  • Angiotensin II
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Renin-angiotensin system

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