Evaluation of medial hypertrophy in resistance vessels of spontaneously hypertensive rats.
The role of smooth muscle cell hypertrophy, hyperploidy, and hyperplasia in medial hypertrophy of mesenteric resistance vessels of 107- to 111-day-old spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) was examined using a combination of morphometric, biochemical, and immunological techniques. Mesenteric arteries were classified on the basis of branching order for comparative purposes. Branch level I vessels were those that directly enter the jejunal wall, while Branches II to IV represented more proximal vessels; Branch IV vessels were those that branch from the superior mesenteric artery. Medial hypertrophy was assessed in perfusion-fixed vessels by morphometric evaluation of medial cross-sectional area and smooth muscle content. Medial cross-sectional area and smooth muscle content were significantly increased in larger (Branches III and IV) but not smaller (Branches I and II) mesenteric resistance vessels of SHR compared with control normotensive Wistar-Kyoto rats (WKY). Smooth muscle cell hypertrophy and hyperploidy were evaluated in isolated cells obtained by enzymatic dissociation of mesenteric resistance vessels. Approximately 80% of the cells in these preparations were identified as smooth muscle cells using a smooth muscle-specific isoactin antibody. Feulgen-DNA microdensitometric evaluation of isolated cells showed that polyploid cells were present in mesenteric resistance vessels but at very low frequencies, and no differences were apparent between SHR and WKY. Likewise, no differences in cellular protein content or relative smooth muscle cell size (i.e., area profile) were observed between cells obtained from SHR and WKY vessels. These results demonstrate that the increase in medial smooth muscle content observed in larger mesenteric resistance vessels of SHR cannot be accounted for by smooth muscle hypertrophy and hyperploidy, inferring that hyperplasia must be present. Results indicate that studies of the initiating mechanisms for medial smooth muscle hypertrophy in SHR resistance vessels, at least relatively early in hypertension, should focus on examination of factors that induce true cellular proliferation rather than hypertrophy and hyperploidy.
- Copyright © 1988 by American Heart Association