Oberassistentin Dr. rer. nat. Steffi Kopprasch

Oxidative stress and atherosclerosis

Previous and current research


Experimental studies

Atherosclerosis is a chronic inflammatory disease with increased oxidative stress in response to lipid retention in the vessel wall. Oxidative stress, characterized by an imbalance between the oxidative and the antioxidative potential in an intracellular or extracellular compartment results in increased formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) with subsequent chemical modification of lipids, proteins, and nucleic acids. Particularly oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL) plays an outstanding role as key mediator of atherosclerosis. In our recent studies we could demonstrate that hypochlorite-oxidized LDL enhances ROS generation of polymorphonuclear leukocytes, stimulates phagocyte adhesion to human endothelial cells, and upregulates CD36 and PPARg mRNA expression in macrophages.


Clinical studies

Prediabetic and diabetic patients are at particular high risk for macrovascular disease including atherosclerosis. We investigated parameters of systemic oxidative stress in subjects with impaired glucose tolerance and found significantly increased levels of circulating oxLDL that were closely associated with dyslipidemia. Based on these findings we currently characterize oxidative and glycative modifications of LDL isolated from patients with impaired glucose tolerance and explore their biological effects on gene expression in macrophages. In addition, we evaluate in a diabetes prevention study (PREDIAS) a panel of systemic parameters as indicators of the individual oxidative stress like circulating phagocyte oxygenation activity, lag time of serum diene formation, serum concentration of oxLDL, myeloperoxidase, protein carbonyls and TBARS, and serum paraoxonase activity.

Selected publications


  1. Kopprasch S, Pietzsch J, Kuhlisch E, Fuecker K, Temelkova-Kurktschiev T, Hanefeld M, Kühne H, Julius U, Graessler J. In vivo evidence for increased oxidation of circulating LDL in impaired glucose tolerance. Diabetes 51 (2002)3102-3106.
  2. Kopprasch Steffi, Pietzsch J, Kuhlisch E, Graessler J. Lack of association between serum paraoxonase 1 activities and increased oxidized low-density lipoprotein levels in impaired glucose tolerance and newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 88(2003)1711-1716.
  3. Kopprasch S, Pietzsch J, Kruse H-J, Gräßler, J. The pivotal role of scavenger receptor CD36 and phagocyte-derived oxidants in oxidized low density lipoprotein-induced adhesion to endothelial cells. Int J Biochem Cell Biol 36(2004)460-471.
  4. Westendorf T, Graessler J, Kopprasch S. Hypochlorite-oxidized low-density lipoprotein upregulates CD36 and PPAR mRNA expression and modulates SR-BI expression in murine macrophages. Mol Cell Biochem 277(2005)143-152.

Curriculum vitae


1977: Diploma degree, Faculty of Biology, University of Charkow

1983: PhD, Martin-Luther Universität Halle-Wittenberg

1983-1990: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Medical Academy of Dresden

Since 1990: Assistant Professor, Pathobiochemistry Institute, Department of Internal Medicine 3, Carl Gustav Carus Medical School, University of Technology, Dresden

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