Impairment of endothelium-dependent relaxation of rat aortas by homocysteine thiolactone and attenuation by captopril

Yu-Hui Liu, Yu You, Tao Song, Shu-Jing Wu, Li-Ying Liu
Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology 2007, 50 (2): 155-61
To explore the effects of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors on endothelial dysfunction induced by homocysteine thiolactone (HTL). Both endothelium-dependent relaxation and nondependent relaxation of thoracic aortic rings in rats induced by acetylcholine (Ach) or sodium nitroprusside (SNP) and biochemical parameters including malondialdehyde (MDA) and nitric oxide (NO) were measured in rat isolated aorta. Exposure of aortic rings to HTL (3 to 30 mM) for 90 minutes made a significant inhibition of endothelium-dependent relaxation induced by Ach, decreased contents of NO, and increased MDA concentration in aortic tissue. After incubation of aortic rings with captopril (0.003 to 0.03 mM) attenuated the inhibition of endothelium-dependent relaxation (EDR) and significantly resisted the decrease of NO content and elevation of MDA concentration caused by HTL (30 mmol/L) in aortic tissues, a similarly protective effect was observed when the aortic rings were incubated with both N-acetylcysteine (0.05 mM). Treatment with enalaprilat (0.003 to 0.01 mM) made no significant difference with the HTL (30 mM) group regarding EDR, but enalaprilat (0.03 mM) and losartan (0.03 mM) could partly restore the EDR in response to HTL (30 mM). Captopril was more effective than enalaprilat and losartan in attenuation of the inhibition of on acetylcholine-stimulated aortic relaxation by HTL in the same concentration. Moreover, superoxide dismutase (SOD, 200 U/mL), which is a scavenger of superoxide anions, apocynin (0.03 mM), which is an inhibitor of NADPH oxidase, and l-Arginine (3 mmol/L), a precursor of nitric oxide (NO), could reduce HTL (30 mM)-induced inhibition of EDR. After pretreatment with not only the NO synthase inhibitor Nomega-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME, 0.01 mM) but also the free sulfhydryl group blocking agent p-hydroxymercurybenzoate (PHMB, 0.05 mM) could abolish the protection of captopril and N-acetylcysteine, respectively. These results suggest that mechanisms of endothelial dysfunction induced by HTL may include the decrease of NO and the generation of oxygen free radicals and that captopril can restore the inhibition of EDR induced by HTL in isolated rat aorta, which may be related to scavenging oxygen free radicals and may be sulfhydryl-dependent.

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