G-protein-coupled estrogen receptors (GPERs) have been proposed to mediate estrogen-mediated vasodilation. The presence of GPER-dependent vasodilation in human resistance-sized arteries (HRAs) or its signal transduction pathways have not been investigated. HRAs in subcutaneous fat tissues (biopsies from postmenopausal women (PMW), age-matched men (M) and pregnant women (PGW)) were mounted for in vitro isometric force recording. Vasodilation induced by G-1 (selective GPER-agonist, 3 ?M) from HRAs pre-contracted with norepinephrine amounted to 40±5% in PMW, significantly larger than those obtained from M (20±5%) or PGW (20±5%). L-NAME (nitric oxide (NO) synthase inhibitor) abolished these relaxations in PGW, attenuated them in PMW and had no effect in M. Immunohistochemical analysis confirmed the presence of GPER in both smooth muscle and endothelial cells of HRA with maximum expression in PGW. In cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs), G-1 increased NO-synthesis concentration-dependently through higher expressions of endothelial NO-synthase (eNOS) and through enhanced phosphorylation of eNOS on Ser(1177). In conclusion, GPER vasodilates human resistance arteries through various activating mechanisms of the eNOS-signaling pathway.
Elevated systemic pentraxin 3 (PTX3) levels appear to be a powerful marker of inflammatory status and a superior outcome predictor in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). As previous data imply that PTX3 is involved in vascular pathology and that adipose tissue mass may influence circulating PTX3 levels, we aimed to study the importance of adipose tissue expression of PTX3 in the uremic milieu and its relation to endothelial dysfunction parameters. Plasma PTX3 and abdominal subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) PTX3 mRNA levels were quantified in 56 stage 5 CKD patients (median age 57 [range 25-75] years, 30 males) and 40 age and gender matched controls (median age 58 [range 20-79] years, 27 males). Associations between PTX3 measures and an extensive panel of clinical parameters, including surrogate markers of endothelial function, were assessed. Functional ex vivo studies on endothelial status and immunohistochemical staining for PTX3 were conducted in resistance subcutaneous arteries isolated from SAT. SAT PTX3 mRNA expression correlated with plasma PTX3 concentrations (rho = 0.54, p = 0.0001) and was increased (3.7 [0.4-70.3] vs. 1.2 [0.2-49.3] RQ, p = 0.02) in CKD patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD), but was not significantly different between patients and controls. The association to CVD was lost after adjustments. SAT PTX3 mRNA levels were independently correlated to asymmetric dimethylarginine and basal resistance artery tone developed after inhibition with nitric oxide synthase and cyclooxygenase (rho = -0.58, p = 0.002). Apparent positive PTX3 immunoreactivity was observed in both patient and control arteries. In conclusion, fat PTX3 mRNA levels are associated with measures of endothelial cell function in patients with CKD. PTX3 may be involved in adipose tissue-orchestrated mechanisms that are restricted to the uremic milieu and modify inflammation and vascular complications in CKD patients.
We investigated an effect of uraemia on structural and functional features of human resistance vasculature. Arteries (? 200 ?m) isolated from subcutaneous fat biopsies obtained from 35 ESRD (end-stage renal disease) patients starting peritoneal dialysis and 30 matched controls were studied using isolated small artery bioassays. Flow-mediated dilatation was attenuated in ESRD patients compared with controls. NO (nitric oxide) contribution to flow was lacking in ESRD patients, but present in the controls. ADMA (asymmetrical dimethyl L-arginine) levels were higher in the ESRD group compared with the control group. Dilatation in response to acetylcholine was reduced in ESRD patients compared with controls, but response to NO donor was similar. Expression of nitrotyrosine and heat shock proteins 70 and 27, but not 90, was increased in arteries from ESRD patients compared with controls. Arterial remodelling was absent in ESRD patients. There was no difference between the groups in myogenic tone, vascular reactivity or sensitivity to several vasoconstrictors. Arterial distensibility, reflecting passive properties of the vascular wall, was reduced in ESRD patients compared with controls. Exclusion of ESRD patients with diabetes and/or cardiovascular disease from analyses had no influence on the main findings. Thus we propose that uraemia has a strong impact on endothelial function and passive properties of the arterial wall of human peripheral resistance vasculature. The reduced contribution of NO to flow stimulus via enhanced nitrosative stress and higher plasma concentrations of ADMA may suggest potential mechanisms behind endothelial dysfunction in the resistance peripheral circulation in ESRD.
Premature vascular calcification (or rather ossification) significantly contributes to morbidity and mortality in patients with chronic kidney disease stage 5 (CKD-5) and is linked to dysregulation of bone remodelling proteins. Recent evidence of a cross-talk between bone and fat tissue urged us to investigate whether the calcification/ossification-associated factors osteoprotegerin (OPG) and alpha-2-HS-glycoprotein (AHSG) are expressed in human uremic subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) and if the expression differs from nonuremic SAT.
This study explored if a combined supplementation of GH and IGF-1 had an additive effect on whole body nitrogen economy, energy, substrate and skeletal muscle metabolism following surgical trauma. Patients were randomized to controls (C; n = 10), to GH (0.15 IU/kg/injection) (GH; n = 7) or GH combined with IGF-1 (40 mug/kg/injection) subcutaneously twice a day (GH-IGF-1; n = 9) together with standardized parenteral nutrition. Muscle amino acids, glutathione and the ribosomal pattern reflecting protein synthesis, and nitrogen balance were measured. GH- and GH-IGF-1 groups showed lower urea and higher plasma glucose concentrations. Energy expenditure increased in the GH-group. GH-IGF-1 prevented a decrease in muscle polyribosomes indicating a preserved muscle protein synthesis. In the GH group unaltered BCAA and AAA levels were seen in muscle indicating an unchanged protein breakdown, while the other groups showed increased muscle concentrations postoperatively. Without statistically difference GH marginally improved the nitrogen balance, in terms of higher values, and growth factors improved the nitrogen balance when the shift in urea was taken into account. To conclude, growth factors influences urea metabolism, protein degradation and protein synthesis. There was no clearcut additional effect when combining GH and IGF-1 but the study was probably underpowered to outrule this and effects on nitrogen balance.
Glutathione is a major antioxidant, and, in the present study, we investigated whether a clinical model of short warm ischaemia and reperfusion of the human liver during surgery would influence glutathione and amino acid metabolism. Previous studies in humans have demonstrated that ischaemia and reperfusion in skeletal muscle for up to 120 min have no major effect on muscle glutathione concentrations. Liver ischaemia and reperfusion in animals have demonstrated diverging results concerning glutathione metabolism. In the present study, six patients with liver malignancies, undergoing liver resection during warm ischaemia, were included. Liver biopsies were obtained from healthy appearing liver tissue from both lobes before ischaemia and at maximal ischaemia, and from the remaining liver lobe after 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30 min of reperfusion. The biopsies were analysed for glutathione, amino acids and lactate. Median ischaemia time was 28 (range, 15-36) min. Lactate increased 266% at maximal ischaemia (P<0.05). No alterations in glutathione concentrations or the redox status of glutathione (GSH/total glutathione) were observed. Glutamate decreased 22% (P<0.05) at maximal ischaemia and increased thereafter 72% at 30 min of reperfusion (P<0.05). Alanine increased 105% at maximal ischaemia (P<0.05) and was normalized during reperfusion. BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids) increased 67% at maximal ischaemia (P<0.05). In conclusion, short-time ischaemia and reperfusion in the human liver did not affect glutathione concentrations, whereas changes were observed in amino acid concentrations during both ischaemia and reperfusion.
Patients with septic shock have high plasma glutathione concentrations, whereas intracellular concentrations in erythrocytes and muscle are low. In the present study, we investigated the temporal pattern of glutathione status and glutathione kinetics in healthy volunteers during the initial phase of sepsis using a human endotoxin model. The present study was a descriptive pilot study in healthy male volunteers (n=8) before and after an endotoxin challenge. The glutathione status was determined in plasma and whole blood at baseline and hourly for 4 h after intravenous endotoxin injection and in skeletal muscle at baseline and at 2 and 4 h after endotoxin injection. In plasma, the concentration of total glutathione decreased 24% (P<0.05) at 3 h after endotoxin injection and 32% (P<0.001) at 4 h. In whole blood and skeletal muscle, the concentrations of both GSH and total glutathione as well as the redox status remained unaltered during the initial 4 h after the endotoxin challenge. The FSR (fractional synthesis rate) of glutathione in whole blood was 38+/-20%/day before and 59+/-22%/day 4 h after the endotoxin challenge (P=0.088) and in skeletal muscle this was 41+/-25 and 46+/-18%/day (P=0.68) respectively. During the initial phase of sepsis, as represented by an intravenous endotoxin challenge to healthy volunteers, plasma concentrations of total glutathione decreased, whereas glutathione status and synthesis rate in skeletal muscle and whole blood remained unaltered. However, due to the variation in the synthesis measurements, larger studies are needed to confirm these findings.
The aim of the study was to explore if changes in muscle and plasma amino acid concentrations developed during growth and differed from levels seen in adults. The gradient and concentrations of free amino acids in muscle and plasma were investigated in relation to age in metabolic healthy children. Plasma and specimens from the abdominal muscle were obtained during elective surgery. The children were grouped into three groups (group 1: < 1 year, n = 8; group 2: 1-4 years, n = 13 and group 3: 5-15 years, n = 15). A reference group of healthy adults (21-38 years, n = 22) was included in their comparisons and reflected specific differences between children and adults. In muscle the concentrations of 8 out of 19 amino acids analysed increased with age, namely taurine, aspartate, threonine, alanine, valine, isoleucine, leucine, histidine, as well as the total sums of branched chain amino acids (BCAA), basic amino acids (BAA) and total sum of amino acids (P < 0.05). In plasma the concentrations of threonine, glutamine, valine, cysteine, methionine, leucine, lysine, tryptophane, arginine, BCAA, BAA and the essential amino acids correlated with age (P < 0.05). These results indicate that there is an age dependency of the amino acid pattern in skeletal muscle and plasma during growth.
The study focuses on the mechanisms of endothelial dysfunction in the uremic milieu. Subcutaneous resistance arteries from 35 end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients and 28 matched controls were studied ex-vivo. Basal and receptor-dependent effects of endothelium-derived factors, expression of endothelial NO synthase (eNOS), prerequisites for myoendothelial gap junctions (MEGJ), and associations between endothelium-dependent responses and plasma levels of endothelial dysfunction markers were assessed. The contribution of endothelium-derived hyperpolarizing factor (EDHF) to endothelium-dependent relaxation was impaired in uremic arteries after stimulation with bradykinin, but not acetylcholine, reflecting the agonist-specific differences. Diminished vasodilator influences of the endothelium on basal tone and enhanced plasma levels of asymmetrical dimethyl L-arginine (ADMA) suggest impairment in NO-mediated regulation of uremic arteries. eNOS expression and contribution of MEGJs to EDHF type responses were unaltered. Plasma levels of ADMA were negatively associated with endothelium-dependent responses in uremic arteries. Preserved responses of smooth muscle to pinacidil and NO-donor indicate alterations within the endothelium and tolerance of vasodilator mechanisms to the uremic retention products at the level of smooth muscle. We conclude that both EDHF and NO pathways that control resistance artery tone are impaired in the uremic milieu. For the first time, we validate the alterations in EDHF type responses linked to kinin receptors in ESRD patients. The association between plasma ADMA concentrations and endothelial function in uremic resistance vasculature may have diagnostic and future therapeutic implications.
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