Abstract 211: Inhibition of Heme Oxygenase-1 (HO-1) Induces Mild Hypertension in Pregnant Rats
In the preeclamptic patient, inadequate remodeling of the maternal vasculature exacerbates this effect, causing dramatically increased oxidative stress in the placenta, which has been shown to be an important component of the maternal hypertension. There is also increasing awareness that HO-1 may act as an important regulator of placental function during normal pregnancy and decreases in HO-1 activity have been implicated in the pathogenesis of preeclampsia. While previous work in pregnant mice demonstrated that pharmacological inhibition of HO-1 leads to elevations in blood pressure, the mechanisms involved in the hypertension are unclear. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that HO inhibition in late gestation leads to increases in maternal blood pressure by altering angiogenic balance and increasing placental oxidative stress in pregnant rats. HO activity was inhibited with tin mesoporphyrin (SnMP) was administered on gestational day 14, and blood pressure was measured on gestational day 19 by indwelling carotid catheter before sacrifice. In response to SnMP treatment, maternal MAP was significantly increased (99±1 vs 113±2 mmHg, p<0.05, n=15 per group). Placental sFlt-1 (631±47 vs 648±26 pg/mg, p=0.76) levels in the placenta were not affected by HO inhibition. Additionally, there was no significant difference in free VEGF in the maternal circulation (287±22 vs 329±14 pg/ml, p=0.11). There was, however, a significant increase in placental NADPH oxidase activity in SnMP treated rats (2021±238 vs 3005±301 RLU/min/mg, p<0.05) as determined by NADPH dependent lucigenin luminescence. This is likely due to decreased production of bilirubin, which is known to inhibit NADPH oxidase activity, and suggests an important role for HO-1 as an antioxidant in the developing placenta.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.