320,328 research outputs found

    Chemerin receptor blockade improves vascular function in diabetic obese mice via redox-sensitive- and Akt-dependent pathways

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    Chemerin and its G protein-coupled receptor [chemerin receptor 23 (ChemR23)] have been associated with endothelial dysfunction, inflammation, and insulin resistance. However, the role of chemerin on insulin signaling in the vasculature is still unknown. We aimed to determine whether chemerin reduces vascular insulin signaling and whether there is interplay between chemerin/ChemR23, insulin resistance, and vascular complications associated with type 2 diabetes (T2D). Molecular and vascular mechanisms were probed in mesenteric arteries and cultured vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) from C57BL/6J, nondiabetic lean db/m, and diabetic obese db/db mice as well as in human microvascular endothelial cells (HMECs). Chemerin decreased insulin-induced vasodilatation in C57BL/6J mice, an effect prevented by CCX832 (ChemR23 antagonist) treatment. In VSMCs, chemerin, via oxidative stress- and ChemR23-dependent mechanisms, decreased insulin-induced Akt phosphorylation, glucose transporter 4 translocation to the membrane, and glucose uptake. In HMECs, chemerin decreased insulin-activated nitric oxide signaling. AMP-activated protein kinase phosphorylation was reduced by chemerin in both HMECs and VSMCs. CCX832 treatment of db/db mice decreased body weight, insulin, and glucose levels as well as vascular oxidative stress. CCX832 also partially restored vascular insulin responses in db/db and high-fat diet-fed mice. Our novel in vivo findings highlight chemerin/ChemR23 as a promising therapeutic target to limit insulin resistance and vascular complications associated with obesity-related diabetes

    Absence of reflex vascular responses from the intrapulmonary circulation in anaesthetised dogs

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    The aim of this investigation was to determine whether reflex cardiovascular responses were obtained to localised distension of the intrapulmonary arterial and venous circulations in a preparation in which the stimuli to other major reflexogenic areas were controlled and the lung was shown to possess reflex activity. Dogs were anaesthetised with [alpha]-chloralose, artificially ventilated, the chests widely opened and a cardiopulmonary bypass established. The intrapulmonary region of the left lung was isolated and perfused through the left pulmonary artery and drained through cannulae in the left pulmonary veins via a Starling resistance. Intrapulmonary arterial and venous pressures were controlled by the rate of inflow of blood and the pressure applied to the Starling resistance. Pressures to the carotid, aortic and coronary baroreceptors and heart chambers were controlled. Responses of vascular resistance were assessed from changes in perfusion pressures to a vascularly isolated hind limb and to the remainder of the subdiaphragmatic circulation (flows constant). The reactivity of the preparation was demonstrated by observing decreases in vascular resistance to large step changes in carotid sinus pressure (systemic vascular resistance decreased by -40 ± 5 %), chemical stimulation of lung receptors by injection into the pulmonary circulation of veratridine or capsaicin (resistance decreased by -32 ± 4 %) and, in the four dogs tested, increasing pulmonary stroke volume to 450 ml (resistance decreased by -24 ± 6 %). However, despite this evidence that the lung was innervated, increases in intrapulmonary arterial pressure from 14 ± 1 to 43 ± 3 mmHg or in intrapulmonary venous pressure from 5 ± 2 to 34 ± 2 mmHg or both did not result in any consistent changes in systemic or limb vascular resistances. In two animals tested, however, there were marked decreases in efferent phrenic nerve activity. These results indicate that increases in pressure confined to the intrapulmonary arterial and venous circulations do not cause consistent reflex vascular responses, even though the preparation was shown to be reflexly active and the lung was shown to be innervated

    Vascular smooth muscle contraction in hypertension

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    Hypertension is a major risk factor for many common chronic diseases, such as heart failure, myocardial infarction, stroke, vascular dementia and chronic kidney disease. Pathophysiological mechanisms contributing to the development of hypertension include increased vascular resistance, determined in large part by reduced vascular diameter due to increased vascular contraction and arterial remodelling. These processes are regulated by complex interacting systems such as the renin angiotensin aldosterone system (RAAS), sympathetic nervous system, immune activation and oxidative stress, which influence vascular smooth muscle function. Vascular smooth muscle cells are highly plastic and in pathological conditions undergo phenotypic changes from a contractile to a proliferative state. Vascular smooth muscle contraction is triggered by an increase in intracellular free calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i), promoting actin-myosin cross-bridge formation. Growing evidence indicates that contraction is also regulated by calcium-independent mechanisms involving RhoA-Rho kinase (ROCK), protein kinase C (PKC) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling, reactive oxygen species and reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton. Activation of immune/inflammatory pathways and noncoding RNAs are also emerging as important regulators of vascular function. Vascular smooth muscle cell [Ca2+]i, not only determines the contractile state but also influences activity of many calcium-dependent transcription factors and proteins thereby impacting the cellular phenotype and function. Perturbations in vascular smooth muscle cell signaling and altered function influence vascular reactivity and tone, important determinants of vascular resistance and blood pressure. Here we discuss mechanisms regulating vascular reactivity and contraction in physiological and pathophysiological conditions and highlight some new advances in the field, focusing specifically on hypertension

    Carotid baroreceptor reflexes in humans during orthostatic stress

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    Orthostatic stress, including standing, head-up tilting and lower body suction, results in increases in peripheral vascular resistance but little or no change in mean arterial pressure. This study was undertaken to determine whether the sensitivity of the carotid baroreceptor reflex was enhanced during conditions of decreased venous return. We studied eight healthy subjects and determined responses of pulse interval (ECG) and forearm vascular resistance (mean finger blood pressure divided by Doppler estimate of brachial artery blood velocity) to graded increases and decreases in carotid transmural pressure, effected by a neck suction/pressure device. Responses were determined with and without the application of lower body negative pressure (LBNP) at -40 mmHg. Stimulus-response curves were determined as the responses to graded neck pressure changes and the differential of this provided estimates of reflex sensitivity. Changes in carotid transmural pressure caused graded changes in R-R interval and vascular resistance. The cardiac responses were unaffected by LBNP. Vascular resistance responses, however, were significantly enhanced during LBNP and the peak gain of the reflex was increased from 1.2 ± 0.3 (mean ± S.E.M.) to 2.2 ± 0.3 units (P < 0.05). The increased baroreflex gain may contribute to maintenance of blood pressure during orthostatic stress and limit the pressure decreases during prolonged periods of such stress. Experimental Physiology (2001) 86.5, 677-681

    The Effect of ACE Inhibition on the Pulmonary Vasculature in Combined Models of Chronic Hypoxia and Pulmonary Arterial Banding in Sprague Dawley Rats

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    Microfocal CT was used to image the pulmonary arterial (PA) tree in rodent models of pulmonary hypertension (PH). CT images were used to measure the arterial tree diameter along the main arterial trunk at several hydrostatic intravascular pressures and calculate distensibility. High-resolution planar angiographic imaging was also used to examine distal PA microstructure. Data on pulmonary artery tree morphology improves our understanding of vascular remodeling and response to treatments. Angiotensin II (ATII) has been identified as a mediator of vasoconstriction and proliferative mitotic function. ATII has been shown to promote vascular smooth muscle cell hypertrophy and hyperplasia as well as stimulate synthesis of extracellular matrix proteins. Available ATII is targeted through angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs), a method that has been used in animal models of PH to attenuate vascular remodeling and decrease pulmonary vascular resistance. In this study, we used rat models of chronic hypoxia to induce PH combined with partial left pulmonary artery occlusion (arterial banding, PLPAO) to evaluate effects of the ACEI, captopril, on pulmonary vascular hemodynamic and morphology. Male Sprague Dawley rats were placed in hypoxia (FiO2 0.1), with one group having underwent PLPAO three days prior to the chronic hypoxia. After the twenty-first day of hypoxia exposure, treatment was started with captopril (20 mg/kg/day) for an additional twenty-one days. At the endpoint, lungs were excised and isolated to examine: pulmonary vascular resistance, ACE activity, pulmonary vessel morphology and biomechanics. Hematocrit and RV/LV+septum ratio was also measured. CT planar images showed less vessel dropout in rats treated with captopril versus the non-treatment lungs. Distensibility data shows no change in rats treated with captopril in both chronic hypoxia (CH) and CH with PLPAO (CH+PLPAO) models. Hemodynamic measurements also show no change in the pulmonary vascular resistance with captopril treatment in both CH and CH+PLPAO

    Impaired decidual natural killer cell regulation of vascular remodelling in early human pregnancies with high uterine artery resistance

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    During human pregnancy, natural killer (NK) cells accumulate in the maternal decidua, but their specific roles remain to be determined. Decidual NK (dNK) cells are present during trophoblast invasion and uterine spiral artery remodelling. These events are crucial for successful placentation and the provision of an adequate blood supply to the developing fetus. Remodelling of spiral arteries is impaired in the dangerous pregnancy complication pre-eclampsia. We studied dNK cells isolated from pregnancies at 9-14 weeks' gestation, screened by uterine artery Doppler ultrasound to determine resistance indices which relate to the extent of spiral artery remodelling. dNK cells were able to promote the invasive behaviour of fetal trophoblast cells, partly through HGF. Cells isolated from pregnancies with higher resistance indices were less able to do this and secreted fewer pro-invasive factors. dNK cells from pregnancies with normal resistance indices could induce apoptotic changes in vascular smooth muscle and endothelial cells in vitro, events of importance in vessel remodelling, partly through Fas signalling. dNK cells isolated from high resistance index pregnancies failed to induce vascular apoptosis and secreted fewer pro-apoptotic factors. We have modelled the cellular interactions at the maternal-fetal interface and provide the first demonstration of a functional role for dNK cells in influencing vascular cells. A potential mechanism contributing to impaired vessel remodelling in pregnancies with a higher uterine artery resistance is presented. These findings may be informative in determining the cellular interactions contributing to the pathology of pregnancy disorders where remodelling is impaired, such as pre-eclampsia. Copyright © 2012 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd

    Nitric Oxide Bioavailability and Its Potential Relevance to the Variation in Susceptibility to the Renal and Vascular Complications in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes

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    OBJECTIVE—We compared the renal and systemic vascular (renovascular) response to a reduction of bioavailable nitric oxide (NO) in type 2 diabetic patients without nephropathy and of African and Caucasian heritage. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS—Under euglycemic conditions, renal blood flow was determined by a constant infusion of paraminohippurate and changes in blood pressure and renal vascular resistance estimated before and after an infusion of l-Ng-monomethyl-l-arginine. RESULTS—In the African-heritage group, there was a significant fall in renal blood flow (Δ−46.0 ml/min per 1.73 m(2); P < 0.05) and rise in systolic blood pressure (Δ10.0 mmHg [95% CI 2.3–17.9]; P = 0.017), which correlated with an increase in renal vascular resistance (r(2) = 0.77; P = 0.004). CONCLUSIONS—The renal vasoconstrictive response associated with NO synthase inhibition in this study may be of relevance to the observed vulnerability to renal injury in patients of African heritage

    Pulmonary arterial remodeling revealed by microfocal x-ray tomography

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    Animal models and micro-CT imaging are useful for understanding the functional consequences of, and identifying the genes involved in, the remodeling of vascular structures that accompanies pulmonary vascular disease. Using a micro-CT scanner to image contrast-enhanced arteries in excised lungs from fawn hooded rats (a strain genetically susceptible to hypoxia induced pulmonary hypertension), we found that portions of the pulmonary arterial tree downstream from a given diameter were morphometrically indistinguishable. This \u27self-consistency\u27 property provided a means for summarizing the pulmonary arterial tree architecture and mechanical properties using a parameter vector obtained from measurements of the contiguous set of vessel segments comprising the longest (principal) pathway and its branches over a range of vascular pressures. This parameter vector was used to characterize the pulmonary vascular remodeling that occurred in rats exposed to a hypoxic (11.5% oxygen) environment and provided the input to a hemodynamic model relating structure to function. The major effect of the remodeling was a longitudinally (pulmonary artery to arterioles) uniform decrease in vessel distensibility that resulted in a 90% increase in arterial resistance. Despite the almost uniform change in vessel distensibility, over 50% of the resistance increase was attributable to vessels with unstressed diameters less than 125 microns

    Evaluation of Vascular Control Mechanisms Utilizing Video Microscopy of Isolated Resistance Arteries of Rats

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    This protocol describes the use of in vitro television microscopy to evaluate vascular function in isolated cerebral resistance arteries (and other vessels), and describes techniques for evaluating tissue perfusion using Laser Doppler Flowmetry (LDF) and microvessel density utilizing fluorescently labeled Griffonia simplicifolia (GS1) lectin. Current methods for studying isolated resistance arteries at transmural pressures encountered in vivo and in the absence of parenchymal cell influences provide a critical link between in vivo studies and information gained from molecular reductionist approaches that provide limited insight into integrative responses at the whole animal level. LDF and techniques to selectively identify arterioles and capillaries with fluorescently-labeled GS1 lectin provide practical solutions to enable investigators to extend the knowledge gained from studies of isolated resistance arteries. This paper describes the application of these techniques to gain fundamental knowledge of vascular physiology and pathology in the rat as a general experimental model, and in a variety of specialized genetically engineered designer rat strains that can provide important insight into the influence of specific genes on important vascular phenotypes. Utilizing these valuable experimental approaches in rat strains developed by selective breeding strategies and new technologies for producing gene knockout models in the rat, will expand the rigor of scientific premises developed in knockout mouse models and extend that knowledge to a more relevant animal model, with a well understood physiological background and suitability for physiological studies because of its larger size
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