Endothelin stimulated by angiotensin II augments contractility of spontaneously hypertensive rat resistance arteries.
In cultured endothelial cells, endothelin is produced after stimulation with angiotensin II. The effects of angiotensin II and endothelin-1 on vascular sensitivity to norepinephrine were studied in perfused rat mesenteric resistance arteries. Expression of endothelin messenger RNA (mRNA) was determined in endothelial cells obtained from the mesenteric circulation. Perfusion (5 hours) of the arteries with angiotensin II (10(-7) M) potentiated contractions in arteries with endothelium induced by norepinephrine in spontaneously hypertensive rats but not Wistar-Kyoto rats. The potentiation was inhibited by phosphoramidon and an endothelin antibody. Short-term stimulation (1 hour) with angiotensin II did not cause the potentiation. Stimulation with angiotensin I (10(-7) M; 5 hours) caused a potentiation prevented by captopril. In endothelial cells collected from the mesenteric arterial bed of spontaneously hypertensive rats, endothelin-specific mRNA was constitutively expressed, and the level of endothelin transcripts was increased by angiotensin II (10(-7) M). Threshold concentrations of exogenous endothelin-1 potentiated contractions induced by norepinephrine in arteries with and without endothelium of spontaneously hypertensive rats but not Wistar-Kyoto rats. Thus, angiotensin II stimulates the endothelial production of endothelin in situ and therapy potentiates contractions to norepinephrine in mesenteric resistance arteries of spontaneously hypertensive rats. This suggests that vascular endothelin production acts as an amplifier of the pressor effects of the renin-angiotensin system that may play an important role in hypertension.
- Copyright © 1992 by American Heart Association