Author(s): Frasch HF, Marshall C, Marshall BE
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Abstract These studies document striking pulmonary vasoconstrictor response to nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibition in monocrotaline (MCT) pulmonary hypertension in rats. This constriction is caused by elevated endothelin (ET)-1 production acting on ETA receptors. Isolated, red blood cell plus buffer-perfused lungs from rats were studied 3 wk after MCT (60 mg/kg) or saline injection. MCT-injected rats developed pulmonary hypertension, right ventricular hypertrophy, and heightened pulmonary vasoconstriction to ANG II and the NOS inhibitor NG-monomethyl-L-arginine (L-NMMA). In MCT-injected lungs, the magnitude of the pulmonary pressor response to NOS inhibition correlated strongly with the extent of pulmonary hypertension. Pretreatment of isolated MCT-injected lungs with combined ETA (BQ-123) plus ETB (BQ-788) antagonists or ETA antagonist alone prevented the L-NMMA-induced constriction. Addition of ETA antagonist reversed established L-NMMA-induced constriction; ETB antagonist did not. ET-1 concentrations were elevated in MCT-injected lung perfusate compared with sham-injected lung perfusate, but ET-1 levels did not differ before and after NOS inhibition. NOS inhibition enhanced hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction in both sham- and MCT-injected lungs, but the enhancement was greater in MCT-injected lungs. Results suggest that in MCT pulmonary hypertension, elevated endogenous ET-1 production acting through ETA receptors causes pulmonary vasoconstriction that is normally masked by endogenous NO production.
This article was published in Am J Physiol
and referenced in Journal of Steroids & Hormonal Science