Glucose suppresses biological ferroelectricity in aortic elastin.

Physical review letters (2013-05-18)
Yuanming Liu, Yunjie Wang, Ming-Jay Chow, Nataly Q Chen, Feiyue Ma, Yanhang Zhang, Jiangyu Li
ABSTRACT

Elastin is an intriguing extracellular matrix protein present in all connective tissues of vertebrates, rendering essential elasticity to connective tissues subjected to repeated physiological stresses. Using piezoresponse force microscopy, we show that the polarity of aortic elastin is switchable by an electrical field, which may be associated with the recently discovered biological ferroelectricity in the aorta. More interestingly, it is discovered that the switching in aortic elastin is largely suppressed by glucose treatment, which appears to freeze the internal asymmetric polar structures of elastin, making it much harder to switch, or suppressing the switching completely. Such loss of ferroelectricity could have important physiological and pathological implications from aging to arteriosclerosis that are closely related to glycation of elastin.

MATERIALS
Product Number
Brand
Product Description

Sigma-Aldrich
Elastin from bovine neck ligament, powder
Sigma-Aldrich
Elastin, soluble from bovine neck ligament, salt-free, lyophilized powder
Sigma-Aldrich
Elastin from human skin, insoluble powder
Sigma-Aldrich
Elastin, soluble from human lung, lyophilized powder
Sigma-Aldrich
Elastin, soluble from human aorta, lyophilized powder
Sigma-Aldrich
Elastin from mouse lung, powder