Therapeutic effect of combination of alagebrium (ALT-711) and sildenafil on erectile function in diabetic rats

N Gurbuz, G Sagdic, A Sanli, A Ciftcioglu, I Bassorgun, A Baykal, M F Usta
International Journal of Impotence Research 2012, 24 (3): 114-21
Recently, the relationship between advanced glycation end products (AGEs) and erectile dysfunction (ED) has been reported. The present study aimed to investigate whether a combination of an AGE cross-link breaker (alagebrium/ALT-711) and sildenafil could enhance the erectile capacity in streptozotocin (STZ) diabetic rats. Additionally, we assessed the effect of that treatment option on some molecules that have been suggested to have crucial roles in AGE-related ED pathways. Four groups of animals were utilized: (1) age-matched control rats, (2) STZ-induced diabetic rats (40 mg kg(-1) i.p.), (3) STZ rats+sildenafil (5 mg kg(-1) p.o.), (4) STZ rats treated with a combination of sildenafil (5 mg kg(-1) p.o)+alagebrium/ALT-711 (10 mg kg(-1) p.o.) for the final 1 month of the 2 months of diabetes period. At 2 months after i.p. injection of STZ, all animals underwent cavernosal nerve stimulation (CNS) to assess erectile function. Penile tissue AGEs, MDA (malondialdehyde), cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) (ELISA), endothelial nitric oxide (NO) synthase (eNOS), inducible NO synthase (iNOS) (western blot), nuclear factor (NF)-κB, mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase (immunohistochemistry) and apoptosis (terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated deoxyuridine triphosphate nick-end labeling) analyses were performed in all groups of rats. STZ diabetic rats had a significant decrease in erectile function as determined by the peak intracavernosal pressure (ICP) and total ICP (area under the erectile curve) after CNS when compared with control rats (P<0.05). The increase in both ICP and area under the erectile curve of STZ diabetic rats treated with a combination of sildenafil+alagebrium/ALT-711 as well as in STZ diabetic rats treated with sildenafil alone was significantly greater than STZ diabetic rats. Additionally, combination treatment decreased AGE, MDA, iNOS, NF-κB, MAP kinase and apoptosis levels, whereas it preserved cGMP contents in diabetic penile tissue. Decreased AGE, MDA, iNOS, NF-κB, MAP kinase and increased cGMP levels at the combination (sildenafil+alagebrium/ALT-711) therapy group increased both the peak ICP and total ICP to CNS in the STZ diabetic rats, which was similar to the response observed in control rats. These results may explain the role of AGEs in diabetes-related ED and the effect of an AGE cross-link breaker alagebrium/ALT-711+sildenafil therapy on some critical molecules related to AGE-related ED pathways.

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