[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hypoxia and inflammation play a major role in the revascularization following ischemia. Sildenafil inhibits phosphodiesterase-5, increases intracellular cGMP content and thus induces vasodilation. Sildenafil also induces neovascularization following ischemia but through a pathway remaining incompletely understood. Thus, we investigated the consequences of a long-term sildenafil treatment on post-ischemic revascularization.
The left femoral artery was ligated in sildenafil (25 mg/kg per day)-treated rats. Vascular density and blood flow were evaluated in both legs and expressed as left/right leg (L/R) ratio. After 7 or 21 days, the L/R ratio was 33¡Ó2 % and 54¡Ó9 %, respectively in control rats. Sildenafil increased significantly the ratio to 47¡Ó4 % and 128¡Ó11 %, respectively. A neutralizing VEGF antibody significantly decreased vascular density (×0.48-fold) in control rats without affecting density in sildenafil-treated animals. Blood flow and arteriolar density followed the same pattern. In the ischemic leg, HIF1ƒÑ and VEGF expression level increased in control, not in sidenafil ¡Vtreated rats, suggesting that sildenafil might not preferentially induce angiogenesis. PI3-kinase, Akt and eNOS were activated after 7 days with a down-regulation after 21 days. Sildenafil-induced migration of endothelial cells was prevented by PI3-kinase inhibition with LY294002. Finally, sildenafil-induced rise in blood flow in mesenteric resistance arteries was associated with an increased luminal diameter (outward remodeling or arteriogenesis). This arteriogenesis was also associated with eNOS proteins activation.
– Long term sildenafil treatment increased local blood flow and collateral arteries growth independent of VEGF but in association with activation of PI3-kinase, Akt and eNOS which might preferentially activate arteriogenesis.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2009 · Archives of Cardiovascular Diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE: Notch3, a member of the evolutionary conserved Notch receptor family, is primarily expressed in vascular smooth muscle cells. Genetic studies in human and mice revealed a critical role for Notch3 in the structural integrity of distal resistance arteries by regulating arterial differentiation and postnatal maturation. METHODS AND RESULTS: We investigated the role of Notch3 in vascular tone in small resistance vessels (tail and cerebral arteries) and large (carotid) arteries isolated from Notch3-deficient mice using arteriography. Passive diameter and compliance were unaltered in mutant arteries. Similarly, contractions to phenylephrine, KCl, angiotensin II, and thromboxane A2 as well as dilation to acetylcholine or sodium nitroprusside were unaffected. However, Notch3 deficiency induced a dramatic reduction in pressure-induced myogenic tone associated with a higher flow (shear stress)-mediated dilation in tail and cerebral resistance arteries only. Furthermore, RhoA activity and myosin light chain phosphorylation, measured in pressurized tail arteries, were significantly reduced in Notch3KO mice. Additionally, myogenic tone inhibition by the Rho kinase inhibitor Y27632 was attenuated in mutant tail arteries. CONCLUSIONS: Notch3 plays an important role in the control of vascular mechano-transduction, by modulating the RhoA/Rho kinase pathway, with opposite effects on myogenic tone and flow-mediated dilation in the resistance circulation.
Full-text · Article · Oct 2008 · Arteriosclerosis Thrombosis and Vascular Biology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Resistance arteries are the site of the earliest manifestations of many cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Flow (shear stress) is the main physiological stimulus for the endothelium through the activation of vasodilatory pathways generating flow-mediated dilation (FMD). The role of FMD in local blood flow control and angiogenesis is well established, and alterations in FMD are early markers of cardiovascular disorders. alpha(1)-Integrin, which has a role in angiogenesis, could be involved in FMD. FMD was studied in mesenteric resistance arteries (MRA) isolated in arteriographs. The role of alpha(1)-integrins in FMD was tested with selective antibodies and mice lacking the gene encoding for alpha(1)-integrins. Both anti-alpha(1) blocking antibodies and genetic deficiency in alpha(1)-integrin in mice (alpha(1)(-/-)) inhibited FMD without affecting receptor-mediated (acetylcholine) endothelium-dependent dilation or endothelium-independent dilation (sodium nitroprusside). Similarly, vasoconstrictor tone (myogenic tone and phenylephrine-induced contraction) was not affected. In MRA phosphorylated Akt and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-kinase) were significantly lower in alpha(1)(-/-) mice than in alpha(1)(+/+) mice, although total Akt and endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) were not affected. Pharmacological blockade of PI3-kinase-Akt pathway with LY-294002 inhibited FMD. This inhibitory effect of LY-294002 was significantly lower in alpha(1)(-/-) mice than in alpha(1)(+/+) mice. Thus alpha(1)-integrin has a key role in flow (shear stress)-dependent vasodilation in resistance arteries by transmitting the signal to eNOS through activation of PI3-kinase and Akt. Because of the central role of flow (shear stress) activation of the endothelium in vascular disorders, this finding opens new perspectives in the pathophysiology of the microcirculation and provides new therapeutic targets.
Full-text · Article · May 2008 · AJP Heart and Circulatory Physiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Polyphenols, present in green tea, grapes, or red wine, have paradoxical properties: they protect against cardiac and cerebral ischemia but inhibit angiogenesis in vitro. So we investigated the effects of polyphenols in vivo on postischemic neovascularization. Rats treated with low (0.2 mg x kg(-1) x day(-1)) or high (20 mg x kg(-1) x day(-1)) doses of red wine polyphenolic compounds (RWPC) were submitted to femoral artery ligature on the left leg. Two wks after ligature, high doses of RWPC (i.e., 7 glasses of red wine) reduced arterial, arteriolar, and capillary densities and blood flow in association with an inhibition of a PI3 kinase-Akt-endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) pathway, decreased VEGF expression, and lower metalloproteinase (MMP) activation. Low doses of RWPC (i.e., 1/10th glass of red wine) increased the left/right (L/R) leg ratio to control level in association with an increased blood flow and microvascular density. This angiogenic effect was associated with an overexpression of PI3 kinase-Akt-eNOS pathway and an increased VEGF production without effect on MMP activation. Thus, low and high doses RWPC have respectively pro- and anti-angiogenic properties on postischemic neovascularization in vivo. This unique dual effect of RWPC offers important perspectives for the treatment and prevention of ischemic diseases (low dose) or cancer growth (high dose).
Full-text · Article · Dec 2007 · The FASEB Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The role of angiotensin II type 2 receptors (AT2Rs) remains a matter of controversy. Its vasodilatory and antitrophic properties are well accepted. Nevertheless, in hypertensive rats, AT2R stimulation induces a vasoconstriction counteracting flow-mediated dilation (FMD). This contraction is reversed by hydralazine. Because FMD is also decreased in aging, another risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, we hypothesized that AT2R function might be altered in old-rat resistance arteries. Mesenteric resistance arteries (250 mum in diameter) were isolated from old (24 months) and control (4 months) rats receiving hydralazine (16 mg/kg per day; 2 weeks) or water. FMD, NO-mediated dilation, and endothelial NO synthase expression were lower in old versus control rats. AT2R blockade improved FMD in old rats, suggesting that AT2R stimulation produced vasoconstriction. AT2R expression was higher in old rats and mainly located in the smooth muscle layer. In old rats, AT2R stimulation induced endothelium-independent contraction, which was suppressed by the antioxidant Tempol. Reactive oxygen species level was higher in old-rat arteries than in controls. Hydralazine improved FMD and NO-dependent dilation in old rats without change in AT2R expression and location. In old rats treated with hydralazine, reactive oxygen species level was reduced in endothelial and smooth muscle cells, and AT2R-dependent contraction was abolished. Thus, AT2R stimulation induced vasoconstriction through activation of reactive oxygen species production, contributing to decrease FMD in old-rat resistance arteries. Hydralazine suppressed AT2R-dependent reactive oxygen species production and AT2R-dependent contraction, improving FMD. Importantly, endothelial alterations in aging were reversible. These findings are important to consider in the choice of vasoactive drugs in aging.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chronic increases in blood flow increase arterial diameter and NO-dependent dilation in resistance arteries. Because endothelial dysfunction accompanies metabolic syndrome, we hypothesized that flow-mediated remodeling might be impaired in obese rat resistance arteries. Obese and lean Zucker rat mesenteric resistance arteries were exposed to chronic flow increases through arterial ligation in vivo: arteries exposed to high flow were compared with normal flow arteries. Diameter was measured in vitro in cannulated arteries using pressure arteriography. After 7 days, outward remodeling (diameter increased from 346+/-9 to 412+/-11 mum at 100 mm Hg) occurred in lean high-flow arteries. Endothelium-dependent tone was reduced in high-flow arteries from obese rats by contrast with lean animals. On the other hand, diameter enlargement occurred similarly in the 2 strains. The involvement of NO in endothelium-dependent dilation (evidenced by NO blockade) and endothelial NO synthase phosphorylation was smaller in obese than in lean rats. Superoxide anion and reduced nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase subunit expression (p67phox and gp91phox) increased in obese rats and were higher in high-flow than in control arteries. Acute Tempol (a catalase mimetic), catalase plus superoxide dismutase, and l-arginine plus tetrahydrobiopterin restored endothelium-dependent dilation in obese rat normal and high-flow arteries to the level found in lean control arteries. Thus, flow-induced remodeling in obese resistance arteries was associated with a reduced endothelium-mediated dilation because of a decreased NO bioavailability and an excessive superoxide production. This dysfunction might have negative consequences in ischemic diseases in patients with obesity or metabolic syndrome.