Nitric oxide (NO) contributes to the extracellular potassium-ion concentration ([K+]o)-induced hydroxyl radical (•OH) generation. Cytotoxic free radicals such as peroxinitrite (ONOO−) and •OH may also be implicated in NO-mediated cell injury. NO is synthesized from L-arginine by NO synthase (NOS). NOS activation was induced by K+ depolarization. Oxidative modification of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) is thought to contribute to the production of oxygen derived-free radicals. However, LDL oxidation may be related to noradrenaline-induced •OH generation, but LDL oxidation may be unrelated to •OH generation via NOS activation. Abnormal levels of extracellular free dopamine (DA) and/or intraneuronal Ca2+ triggered by 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP+) may be detrimental to the functioning of dopaminergic nerve terminals in the striatum. Although [K+]o-induced depolarization enhances the formation of •OH product due to MPP+, the •OH generation via NOS activation may be unrelated to the DA-induced •OH generation. Depolarization enhances the formation of •OH products via NOS activation.
Maintenance of blood pressure is mostly dependent on sympathetic “tone”, and the sympathetic nerve innervates the entire vascular bed, excepting the capillaries. Although norepinephrine (NE) is the principal neurotransmitter released upon sympathetic nerve stimulation, neuropeptide Y and ATP are cotransmitters in various vascular tissues. In addition, dopamine and epinephrine, as well as acetylcholine, have been shown to be sympathetic neurotransmitters in specific vasculatures. Transmitter NE release is modified by a number of endogenous substances including the transmitter itself. Chronic denervation of the preganglionic fiber induces an increase in NE release per pulse, indicating postganglionic neuronal supersensitivity. So far, three main adrenoceptor types have been shown, α1, α2 and β, each of which is further divided into at least three subtypes, as well as the α1L-adrenoceptor, a phenotype of the cloned α1a-adrenoceptor, in the blood vessel. Thus, the response of vessels with different receptor types to a transmitter varies quantitatively and even qualitatively from one vessel to another. The remarkable diversity in the sympathetic innervation mechanism in the vascular system may play an important role in regional variations in the regulation of blood flow. The sympathetic nerve also exerts long-term trophic action on the blood vessel. In conclusion, the sympathetic nervous system plays an important role not only in the regulation of cardiovascular dynamics but in the maintenance of the vessel structure, as well.
Recently we have studied the direct vasomotor response of the hindllimb extramuscular large arteries (internal diameter, 500 – 1400 μm) and intramuscular small arteries (internal diameter, 50 – 500 μm) of in vivo thick skeletal muscle during activation of sympathetic cholinergic nerve in anesthetized cats. The hypothalamic defense area was electrically stimulated so as to induce a profound increase in femoral blood flow mediated by sympathetic cholinergic fibers. To visualize the vascular arrangement from the extramuscular large feeding arteries to small arteries in the triceps surae muscle, we developed a new X-ray TV system. The internal diameter, flow velocity, and volume flow of arterial blood vessels were directly measured before and during stimulation of the hypothalamic defense area. The major new finding is that the hypothalamic stimulation causes an intense increase in the internal diameter of small arteries in skeletal muscle, which is abolished either by cholinergic blockade or by the section of the sciatic nerve, but not by combined α-and β-adrenergic blockade. In contrast, the internal diameter of the extramuscular larger arteries does not change during the hypothalamic stimulation, but their flow velocity and volume flow increase. These findings indicate that sympathetic cholinergic vasodilation occurs at intramuscular small arteries with internal diameter of 50 – 500 μm, which in turn increases flow velocity and volume flow of upstream blood vessels.
It is generally agreed that the release of norepinephrine (NE) is inhibited by activation of prejunctional purinoceptor. We examined the pharmacological properties of purinoceptors on vascular sympathetic nerve terminals and the source of endogenous adenyl purines. Electrically (1 Hz) evoked NE-release was inhibited by not only P1-agonists but also P2-agonists. Although the inhibition induced by P2-agonists was blocked by P1-antagonists, P2-agonists-induced inhibition was not due to the breakdown to adenosine. Therefore, there may be a new class of purinoceptor that is activated by both P1- and P2-agonists and antagonized by P1-antagonists. Electrical stimulation at 8 Hz but not at 1 Hz evoked the release of adenyl purines such as ATP, ADP, AMP and adenosine, in addition to NE; and the purines-release was blocked by an α1-antagonist. Methoxamine, an α1-agonist, also evoked the release of purines. Electrically (1 Hz)-evoked NE-release was inhibited by methoxamine, and this inhibition was blocked by not only an α1-antagonist but also a P1-antagonist. Therefore, the activation of α1-adrenoceptor appeared to release purines, which in turn inhibited NE-release via prejunctional purinoceptors. From these results, it is suggested that the unique purinoceptor and the endogenous purines released from α1-adrenoceptor-sensitive sources participate in the antidromic transsynaptic modulation of vascular sympathetic neurotransmission.
The presence of close apposition between the adrenergic and the non-adrenergic or nitrergic nerve terminals in large cerebral arteries in several species is well documented. The axo-axonal distance between these different types of nerve terminals is substantially closer than the synaptic distance between the adventitial nerve terminals and the outermost layer of smooth muscle in the media. This feature suggests that a functional axo-axonal interaction between nerve terminals is more likely to occur than that between the nerve and muscle. Thus, transmitters released from one nerve terminal may modulate release of transmitters from the neighboring nerve terminals, resulting in a neurogenic response. We have reported that nicotine-induced nitric oxide (NO)-mediated neurogenic vasodilation is dependent on intact sympathetic innervation in porcine and cat cerebral arteries. Evidence also has been presented to indicate that nicotine acts on α7-nicotinic receptors located on sympathetic nerve terminals, resulting in release of norepinephrine which then diffuses to act on β2-adrenoceptos located on the neighboring nitrergic nerve terminals to release NO and therefore vasodilation. The predominant facilitatory effect of β2-adrenoceptors in releasing NO is compromised by presynaptic α2-adrenoceptors located on the same nerves. Activation of cerebral sympathetic nerves may cause NO-mediated dilation in large cerebral arteries at the base of the brain.
In cerebral arteries isolated from most of mammals, nerve stimulation produces relaxations in contrast to contractions in peripheral arteries. The relaxant mechanism is found to be non-adrenergic and non-cholinergic, but the neurotransmitter is not clarified until recently. Based on several functional and histological studies with isolated cerebral arteries, nitric oxide (NO) is now considered to be a neurotransmitter of the vasodilator nerve and the nerve has been called a nitroxidergic (nitrergic) nerve. Upon neural excitation, calcium influxed through N-type Ca2+ channels activates neuronal NO synthase, and then NO is produced by the enzyme from L-arginine. The released NO activates soluble guanylate cyclase in smooth muscle cells, resulting in relaxation with a cyclic GMP-dependent mechanism. The functional role and neuronal pathway have also been investigated in anesthetized dogs and Japanese monkeys. The nitroxidergic (nitrergic) nerves innervating the circulus arteriosus, including the anterior and middle cerebral and posterior communicating arteries, are found to be postganglionic nerves originated from the ipsilateral pterygopalatine ganglion and tonically dilate cerebral arteries in the resting condition. Our findings suggest that the nitroxidergic (nitrergic) nerve plays a physiologically important role to maintain a steady blood supply to the brain.
The rat mesenteric artery is innervated by nonadrenergic noncholinergic (NANC) vasodilator nerves in which calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), a potent vasodilator peptide, acts as a vasodilator transmitter. The inhibition of CGRPergic nerve function potentiates a vasoconstrictor response mediated by the sympathetic adrenergic nerve, suggesting that CGRPergic nerves inhibit adrenergic function and play a role in the regulation of mesenteric vascular tone. In contrast, norepinephrine released from adrenergic nerves presynaptically inhibits neurotransmission of CGRPergic nerves. Thus, both nerves reciprocally control the vascular tone. Pathophysiological studies have shown that an age-related decrease in CGRPergic nerve-mediated vasodilation, neurogenic CGRP release and CGRP mRNA levels in the dorsal root ganglia are found in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR), indicating a reduced function of CGRPergic nerves. Long-term treatment with angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor and angiotensin II-receptor antagonist restores the reduced function of CGRPergic nerves, suggesting the involvement of angiotensin II in the malfunction of CGRPergic nerves in SHR.
The effect of thiaton [3-(di-2-thienylmethylene)-5-methyl-trans-quinolizidinium bromide], an antispasmodic drug, on indomethacin-induced intestinal damage was examined in rats. The animals were given indomethacin, s.c., and the intestinal mucosa was examined 24 h later. Thiaton or atropine was given s.c. twice, 30 min before and 8 h following indomethacin. Indomethacin caused intestinal damage, accompanied with increase in enterobacterial translocation as well as inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and myeloperoxidase (MPO) activities, and these changes were significantly prevented by supplementation with 16,16-dimethyl prostaglandin E2 (dmPGE2). Treatment of the animals with thiaton dose-dependently prevented the intestinal damage, together with the suppression of MPO and iNOS activities, and these effects were similarly observed by atropine. The increase of bacterial translocation was also significantly prevented by both thiaton and atropine, similar to dmPGE2. Indomethacin enhanced intestinal motility, and this effect was inhibited by either thiaton, atropine or dmPGE2. The intestinal mucus and fluid secretions were decreased by indomethacin but enhanced by dmPGE2. Both thiaton and atropine slightly decreased these secretions under basal conditions but significantly reversed the decrease in the secretions caused by indomethacin. These results suggest that thiaton protects the small intestine against indomethacin-induced damage and inflammatory changes, and this effect is related with prevention of enterobacterial translocation, the process being associated with inhibition of intestinal hypermotility caused by indomethacin, probably due to anti-muscarinic action.
Vitamin K2 (menatetrenone) has been used for the treatment of osteoporosis in Japan. We investigated the effects of ovariectomy (OVX) and vitamin K2 on the calcium (Ca) balance in 20-week-old female Fischer rats. Vitamin K2 (31 mg/kg per day) was given to animals as a dietary supplement. At weeks 4 and 8 after OVX, a Ca balance study was performed for 5 days. The intestinal Ca transport was determined using the everted gut-sac technique at week 9. The Ca balance was poorer in the OVX-control group than in the sham-control group at weeks 4 and 8 after OVX. The Ca balance improved significantly in the vitamin K2 groups as compared with the sham- and OVX-control groups. The intestinal Ca transport decreased due to OVX and was higher in the vitamin K2 administration groups than in the sham- and OVX-control groups, but not to a significant extent. The bone mineral density in the femoral metaphysis as well as the cortical area and cortical thickness in the femoral diaphysis in the OVX-control group were lower than in the sham-control group. The administration of vitamin K2 significantly inhibited an OVX-induced decrease in cortical area and cortical thickness in the femur. These findings suggest that the poor Ca balance observed in ovariectomized rats may be improved by vitamin K2; vitamin K2 may be involved in preventing bone loss in vivo.
The aim of the present study is to study the pharmacokinetics in plasma, lung lymph and bronchial washing fluid after intravenous infusion of grepafloxacin (GPFX), in comparison with those of levofloxacin (LVFX). Four conscious sheep with chronically instrumented lung lymph fistulas and tracheotomy were prepared. GPFX and LVFX concentrations in plasma and lung lymph after intravenous infusion of the drugs (10 mg/kg) for over 10 min were measured. In addition serial bronchial washing with 50 mL normal saline was performed to obtain epithelial lining fluid (ELF) at 2, 4, 6, 8, 12, 24 h after the intravenous administration. The time courses of lung lymph concentration were almost identical to those of the concomitant levels of both GPFX and LVFX in plasma, suggesting that both GPFX and LVFX could be easily moved from plasma to pulmonary interstitium and/or lung lymph circulation. However, GPFX concentrations of ELF were significantly higher than LVFX concentrations over time after the administration. In addition, intracellular concentrations in ELF of GPFX were also extremely high compared with those of LVFX. These results demonstrated that penetration of GPFX in bronchial wall, bronchial epithelium and/or phagocytic cells was superior to that of LVFX. These observations suggest that the pharmacokinetic characteristics of GPFX in the lung may provide a new insight into the strategy for clinical treatment of various pulmonary infections, especially cytotropic bacterial infections.
The purpose of this study was to elucidate the molecular mechanism for renal tetracycline transport by human organic anion transporters (hOATs) using proximal tubular cells stably expressing hOATs. The cells stably expressing hOAT1, hOAT2, hOAT3 and hOAT4 exhibited a higher amount of [3H]tetracycline uptake compared with mock cells. The apparent Km values for hOAT2-, hOAT3- and hOAT4-mediated tetracycline uptakes were 439.9 ± 23.0, 566.2 ± 28.4 and 122.7 ± 16.0 μM, respectively. Tetracycline significantly inhibited the organic anion uptake by hOAT1, hOAT2 and hOAT4, but not hOAT3. In addition, oxytetracycline, minocycline and doxycycline inhibited the organic anion uptake by hOAT1, whereas oxytetracycline, minocycline but not doxycycline inhibited the organic anion uptake by hOAT2. In contrast, oxytetracycline, minocycline and doxycycline exhibited no significant inhibitory effects on the organic anion uptake by hOAT3 and hOAT4. HOAT1 and hOAT4 mediated the efflux of tetracycline, but hOAT2 and hOAT3 did not. These results suggest that hOAT1, hOAT2 and hOAT3 mediate the basolateral uptake and/or efflux of tetracycline, whereas hOAT4 is responsible for the reabsorption as well as the efflux of tetracycline in the apical side of the proximal tubule. These pharmacological characteristics of hOATs may be significantly related to events associated with the development of tetracycline-induced nephrotoxicity in the human kidney.
To investigate the involvement of protease-activated receptor-2 (PAR-2) in allergic dermatitis, we generated PAR-2-deficient (PAR-2−/−) mice. Ear thickness, contact hypersensitivity (CH) induced by topical application of picryl chloride (PC) or oxazolone (Ox) after sensitization, and vascular permeability after ear passive cutaneous anaphylaxis (PCA) were compared between wild-type (WT) and PAR-2−/− mice. Ear thickness was almost the same in untreated WT and PAR-2−/− mice. Topical application of PC or Ox thickened the ears at 6, 24 and 48 h after challenge with a peak at 24 h in WT mice. In PAR-2−/− mice, the ear swelling induced by both PC and Ox was suppressed at every time point, and significant inhibition was found at 24 h in PC-induced CH and at 24 and 48 h in Ox-induced CH. Histopathological observation of the ears at 24 h after challenge revealed that PC- or Ox-induced ear edema and infiltration of inflammatory cells in WT mice were greatly attenuated in PAR-2−/− mice. The vascular permeability in the ears after PCA was not different between WT and PAR-2−/− mice. These results strongly suggest that PAR-2 plays a crucial role in type IV allergic dermatitis but not in type I allergic dermatitis.
Northern blotting analysis revealed different tissue distribution patterns of HMT mRNA between mice and rats. In the mouse, mRNA expression was detected in the brain, kidney and liver. In the rat, there was an extremely high mRNA signal only in the kidney. We isolated and characterized the rat and mouse histamine N-methyltransferase (HMT) genes from genomic DNA libraries. The rat HMT gene consists of 6 exons and 5 introns. The mouse HMT gene structure was similar to that of the rat, but had one additional exon 5' upstream from the exon containing a start codon, resulting in seven exons. Several long interspersed repetitive elements were located in the 5' flanking region of the rat and mouse HMT gene. Despite high sequence conservation of the regions around exon 6 and the 3' flanking region, the 5' flanking region had little similarity between the rat and mouse. Marked sequence similarities between rat and mouse introns were present near splice sites and outside the junction residues, suggesting the evolutionary relationship between the structural features of the rat and mouse HMT genes. This observation may explain the species difference of the tissue expression pattern of HMT mRNA.
Effects of pre-ischemic and post-ischemic treatment with FR 168888 (5-hydroxymethyl-3-(pyrrol-l-yl) benzoylguanidine methanesulfonate), a Na+/H+ exchange inhibitor, on reperfusion-induced ventricular arrhythmias were examined in an ischemia/reperfusion model of anesthetized rat. FR 168888 (0.3 mg/kg) significantly reduced the incidence of ventricular fibrillation (VF) and mortality induced by reperfusion following 5-min coronary occlusion, when it was intravenously administered 5 min before coronary artery occlusion. Post-ischemic treatment with FR 168888 (0.3 – 10 mg/kg), i.e. given 3 min after the start of occlusion, reduced the incidence of VF and mortality. In order to examine the optimal time of administration, FR 168888 (3 mg/kg) was administered 1 or 3 min after the start of occlusion or immediately before reperfusion. There was no significant difference in the reduction of VF and mortality among the three post-ischemic treatment groups. FR 168888 (3 and 10 mg/kg) significantly increased the blood pressure during ischemia without affecting the heart rate. These results indicate that FR 168888 has antiarrhythmic effects on reperfusion-induced arrhythmias even administered after coronary occlusion.
The present study was designed to examine whether long-term blockade of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) with perindopril ameliorates dobutamine-induced myocardial ischemia in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD). Twelve patients with proven CAD were randomly divided in two groups; one group received perindopril (8 mg/day, p.o.) for 3 months and another group served as a control. To evaluate anti-ischemic effects of perindopril, dobutamine stress echocardiography was performed before and 3 months after the treatment in a double-blind manner. Long-term treatment with perindopril significantly ameliorated the dobutamine-induced myocardial ischemia, as evaluated by time to the onset of symptoms, magnitude of electrocardiographic ST-segment changes, and left ventricular wall motion score (all P<0.05). The treatment significantly decreased serum ACE activities (P<0.01) and increased plasma bradykinin concentrations (P<0.05). The extent of reduction of left ventricular wall motion score by perindopril was closely correlated with that of inhibition of serum ACE activities (P<0.01) and with that of increase in plasma bradykinin concentrations (P<0.05). By contrast, no such beneficial changes were noted in the control group. These results provide the first evidence that long-term treatment with perindopril exerts anti-ischemic effects on the myocardial ischemia induced by increased myocardial oxygen demand in patients with CAD.
We first investigated the relaxations of the urinary bladder induced by β-adrenoceptor agonists in anesthetized cynomolgus monkeys and then employed a variety of β-adrenoceptor agonists and antagonists in vitro to identify the β-adrenoceptor subtype responsible for the relaxation (using isolated monkey detrusors). Isoprenaline reduced bladder pressure in a dose-dependent manner. Isoprenaline, noradrenaline and adrenaline each produced a concentration-dependent relaxation of isolated detrusor strips, the rank order of relaxing potencies being isoprenaline > noradrenaline > adrenaline. Subtype-selective β-adrenoceptor agonists also relaxed isolated detrusor strips, the rank order of potencies being CGP-12177 > BRL 37344 > dobutamine, salbutamol, procaterol > xamoterol. In the antagonist experiment, bupranolol (β-antagonist, 10−6 to 10−5 M) and SR 58894A (β3-antagonist, 10−7 to 10−5 M) caused a rightward shift of the concentration-relaxation curve for isoprenaline, but CGP-20712A (β1-antagonist, 10−9 to 10 −7 M) and ICI-118551 (β2-antagonist, 10−9 to 10−7 M) did not. The present functional study provides the first evidence that relaxation of the monkey detrusor by β-adrenoceptor activation is mediated via the β3-subtype.
We studied whether reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated by normal colonic mucosa affect 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)-evoked 5-HT formation (measured as the sum of 5-HT plus 5-hydroxyindole acetic acid (5-HIAA) accumulation) of guinea pig’s isolated colonic mucosa. Catalase (3000 – 6000 U/ml), a hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) scavenger or diphenylene iodonium (DPI, 10 – 100 μM), an NADPH oxidase inhibitor, concentration-dependently caused an increase of the sum of 5-HT plus 5-HIAA accumulation in the presence of 5-HTP (10 μM), but these drugs did not significantly affect the 5-HT-metabolite in the colonic mucosa measured as the ratio of 5-HIAA/5-HT. Exogenously applied H2O2 (10 – 100 μM) concentration-dependently inhibited the sum of 5-HT plus 5-HIAA accumulation. In contrast, neither superoxide dismutase (SOD, 100 – 300 U/ml), superoxide anion scavenger, nor dimetyl sulfoxide (1 – 5%, DMSO), a hydroxyl radical scavenger affected the sum of 5-HT plus 5-HIAA accumulation. Moreover, mucosa ROS generation was estimated using the chemiluminescence technique. SOD (100 – 300 U/ml), catalase (3000 – 6000 U/ml) or DPI (10 – 100 μM), concentration-dependently reduced luminol-enhanced chemiluminescence signal from the colonic mucosa, while allopurinol (10 – 100 μM), a xanthine oxidase inhibitor, did not affect the chemiluminescence signal. These results suggest that ROS is formed through an NADPH oxidase system in the guinea pig colonic mucosa, where it exerts a modulatory effect on mucosal 5-HT formation upon addition of 5-HTP. Thus, ROS formation from normal colonic mucosa could be considered to contribute to the control of 5-HT production in mucosa enterochromaffin cells.
In dogs, rectal temperature was decreased to about 36°C at 2 to 2.5 h after sedation with buprenorphine (0.3 mg/body, i.m.), and hindlimb subcutaneous tissue temperature (TSC) in the thigh decreased in a similar manner. TSC in the dorsum of the foot showed a greater decrease than that in the thigh. OPC-28326 (4-(N-methyl-2-phenylethylamino)-1-(3,5-dimethyl-4-propionyl-aminobenzoyl) piperidine hydrochloride monohydrate) at doses of 0.3, 1.0 and 3.0 mg/kg, p.o. inhibited the buprenorphine-induced decrease in TSC in the dorsum dose-dependently, but had little effect on that in the thigh or rectal temperature. In conclusion, TSC in the extremities were more sensitive to core temperature and peripheral circulation.
The quantitative measurements of aldose reductase (AR) and sorbitol dehydrogenase (SDH) gene expression in various rat tissues were performed by the competitive reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). AR mRNA was detectable in all tissues analyzed with pronounced differences in the amounts. SDH mRNA was most abundant in testes and liver, but was absent from lens. The estimation of the AR cDNA / SDH cDNA ratio showed that the relative abundance of SDH to AR differs among tissues. These results indicate that different tissues contain varying amounts of AR mRNA and SDH mRNA; that is, each tissue has its own polyol pathway activity.