VEGF deprivation-induced apoptosis is a component of programmed capillary regression. (1/545)

The pupillary membrane (PM) is a transient ocular capillary network, which can serve as a model system in which to study the mechanism of capillary regression. Previous work has shown that there is a tight correlation between the cessation of blood flow in a capillary segment and the appearance of apoptotic capillary cells throughout the segment. This pattern of cell death is referred to as synchronous apoptosis (Lang, R. A., Lustig, M., Francois, F., Sellinger, M. and Plesken, H. (1994) Development 120, 3395-3404; Meeson, A., Palmer, M., Calfon, M. and Lang, R. A. (1996) Development 122, 3929-3938). In the present study, we have investigated whether the cause of synchronous apoptosis might be a segmental deficiency of either oxygen or a survival factor. Labeling with the compound EF5 in a normal PM indicated no segmental hypoxia; this argued that oxygen deprivation was unlikely to be the cause of synchronous apoptosis. When rat plasma was used as a source of survival factors in an in vitro PM explant assay, inhibition of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) all but eliminated the activity of plasma in suppressing apoptosis. This argued that VEGF was an important plasma survival factor. Furthermore, inhibition of VEGF in vivo using fusion proteins of the human Flk-1/KDR receptor resulted in a significantly increased number of capillaries showing synchronous apoptosis. This provides evidence that VEGF is necessary for endothelial cell survival in this system and in addition, that VEGF deprivation mediated by flow cessation is a component of synchronous apoptosis.  (+info)

Effect of electrostatic charge in plastic spacers on the lung delivery of HFA-salbutamol in children. (2/545)

AIMS: The effect of the electrostatic charge in plastic spacers in vivo on drug delivery to the lung of hydrofluoroalkane (HFA) salbutamol spray was studied in children. METHODS: Five children, aged 7-12 years, were included in a 3-way crossover randomised single-blind trial. Salbutamol HFA spray was delivered on 3 different study days from plastic spacers with mouthpiece. Pre-treatment of the spacers differed between study days: (a) Non-electrostatic 350 ml Babyhaler (coated with benzalkonium chloride) (b) New 350 ml Babyhaler (rinsed in water), and (c) New 145 ml AeroChamber (rinsed in water). Plasma salbutamol was measured before and 5, 10, 15 and 20 min after inhalation of four single puffs of 100 microg salbutamol. Cmax and Cav (5-20min) were calculated as a reflection of lung dose. RESULTS: For Cmax: (A) Non-electrostatic Babyhaler 4.3 ng ml(-1) (B) New Babyhaler 1.9 ng ml(-1) (C) New AeroChamber 1.6 ng ml(-1): AvsB (95% CI for difference 0.5-4.5 ng ml(-1)), A vs C (95% CI for difference 0.7-4.8 ng ml(-1)). The geometric mean ratio for A:B was 2.4 fold, and for A:C was 2.9 fold. The values for Cav were similar with ratios for A:B of 2.4 fold, and A: C of 4.1 fold. The nonelectrostatic Babyhaler delivered a significantly (P<0.05) higher lung dose (for both Cmax and Cav) than either of the other two spacers. CONCLUSIONS: The electrostatic charge in plastic spacers reduces lung dose in children by more than two-fold. This is clinically significant and the use of potentially electrostatically charged spacers should be avoided.  (+info)

Carrier-mediated hepatic uptake of peptidic endothelin antagonists in rats. (3/545)

The endothelin antagonist BQ-123, an anionic cyclopentapeptide, is taken up by rat hepatocytes through active transport systems. Here, we have examined the hepatocellular uptake mechanism for several BQ-123 derivatives with anionic charges using isolated rat hepatocytes. BQ-485, a linear peptide, BQ-518, a cyclic peptide, and compound A, a cyclic peptide with a cationic moiety, were taken up by hepatocytes in a concentration-dependent manner. The uptake of BQ-485 was most efficient, whereas compound A showed comparable uptake with BQ-123. The uptake of these peptides was Na(+)- and energy-dependent, suggesting that active transport mechanisms are involved in their uptake into hepatocytes. BQ-485, BQ-518, and compound A can almost completely inhibit both the Na(+)-dependent and -independent uptake of [(3)H]BQ-123, with inhibition constants (K(i)) that are comparable to the Michaelis-Menten constants (K(m)) for their Na(+)-dependent and -independent uptake, respectively. Inhibition by BQ-485 was competitive, and the uptake of BQ-485 can be inhibited by BQ-123, with K(i) values that are comparable with the K(m) values for BQ-123 uptake. The uptake of BQ-123 by COS-7 cells transfected with either Na(+)-dependent taurocholate-cotransporting polypeptide (Ntcp) or Na(+)-independent basolateral organic anion-transporting polypeptide (oatp1) was minimal. Thus, these three peptides share the transporters that also recognize BQ-123 but appear to differ from Ntcp and oatp1.  (+info)

Compound A uptake and metabolism to mercapturic acids and 3,3,3-trifluoro-2-fluoromethoxypropanoic acid during low-flow sevoflurane anesthesia: biomarkers for exposure, risk assessment, and interspecies comparison. (4/545)

BACKGROUND: Sevoflurane is degraded during low-flow anesthesia to fluoromethyl-2,2-difluoro-1-(trifluoromethyl)vinyl ether ("compound A"), which causes renal necrosis in rats but is not known to cause nephrotoxicity in surgical patients. Compound A is metabolized to glutathione S-conjugates and then to cysteine S-conjugates, which are N-acetylated to mercapturic acids (detoxication pathway), or metabolized by renal beta-lyase to reactive intermediates (toxification pathway) and excreted as 3,3,3-trifluoro-2-fluoromethoxypropanoic acid. This investigation quantified compound A metabolites in urine after low-flow sevoflurane administration, to assess relative flux via these two pathways. METHODS: Patients (n = 21) with normal renal function underwent low-flow (11 min) sevoflurane anesthesia designed to maximize compound A formation. Inspiratory, expiratory, and alveolar compound A concentrations were quantified. Urine mercapturic acids and 3,3,3-trifluoro-2-fluoromethoxypropanoic acid concentrations were measured by gas chromatography and mass spectrometry. RESULTS: Sevoflurane exposure was 3.7 +/- 2.0 MAC-h. Inspired compound A maximum was 29 +/- 14 ppm; area under the inspired concentration versus time curve (AUCinsp) was 78 +/- 58 ppm x h. Compound A dose, calculated from pulmonary uptake, was 0.39 +/- 0.35 mmol (4.8 +/- 4.0 micromol/kg) and correlated with AUCinsp (r2 = 0.84, P < 0.001). Mercapturic acids excretion was complete after 2 days, whereas 3,3,3-trifluoro-2-fluoromethoxypropanoic acid excretion continued for 3 days in some patients. Total (3-day) mercapturates and fluoromethoxypropanoic acid excretion was 95 +/- 49 and 294 +/- 416 micromol, respectively (1.2 +/- 0.6 and 3.6 +/- 5.0 micromol/kg). CONCLUSION: Compound A doses during 3.7 MAC-h, low-flow sevoflurane administration in humans are substantially less than the threshold for renal toxicity in rats (200 micromol/kg). Compound A metabolites quantification may provide a biomarker for compound A exposure and relative metabolism via toxification and detoxication pathways. Compared with previous investigations, relative metabolic flux (fluoromethoxypropanoic acid/mercapturates) through the toxification pathway was sixfold greater in rats than in humans. Species differences in dose and metabolism may influence compound A renal effects.  (+info)

Amsorb: a new carbon dioxide absorbent for use in anesthetic breathing systems. (5/545)

BACKGROUND: This article describes a carbon dioxide absorbent for use in anesthesia. The absorbent consists of calcium hydroxide with a compatible humectant, namely, calcium chloride. The absorbent mixture does not contain sodium or potassium hydroxide but includes two setting agents (calcium sulphate and polyvinylpyrrolidine) to improve hardness and porosity. METHODS: The resultant mixture was formulated and subjected to standardized tests for hardness, porosity, and carbon dioxide absorption. Additionally, the new absorbent was exposed in vitro to sevoflurane, desflurane, isoflurane, and enflurane to determine whether these anesthetics were degraded to either compound A or carbon monoxide. The performance data and inertness of the absorbent were compared with two currently available brands of soda lime: Intersorb (Intersurgical Ltd., Berkshire, United Kingdom) and Dragersorb (Drager, Lubeck, Germany). RESULTS: The new carbon dioxide absorbent conformed to United States Pharmacopeia specifications in terms of carbon dioxide absorption, granule hardness, and porosity. When the new material was exposed to sevoflurane (2%) in oxygen at a flow rate of 1 l/min, concentrations of compound A did not increase above those found in the parent drug (1.3-3.3 ppm). In the same experiment, mean +/-SD concentrations of compound A (32.5 +/- 4.5 ppm) were observed when both traditional brands of soda lime were used. After dehydration of the traditional soda limes, immediate exposure to desflurane (60%), enflurane (2%), and isoflurane (2%) produced concentrations of carbon monoxide of 600.0 +/- 10.0 ppm, 580.0 +/- 9.8 ppm, and 620.0 +/-10.1 ppm, respectively. In contrast, concentrations of carbon monoxide were negligible (1-3 ppm) when the anhydrous new absorbent was exposed to the same anesthetics. CONCLUSIONS: The new material is an effective carbon dioxide absorbent and is chemically unreactive with sevoflurane, enflurane, isoflurane, and desflurane.  (+info)

Human neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes predict efficacy of halogenated compounds that disobey the Meyer-Overton rule. (6/545)

BACKGROUND: According to the Meyer-Overton rule, anesthetic potency of a substance can be predicted by its lipid solubility, but a group of halogenated volatile compounds predicted to induce anesthesia does not obey this rule. Thus, these compounds are useful tools for studies of molecular targets of anesthetics. Human neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (hnAChR) subunits have been recently cloned, which allowed the authors to assess whether these receptors could differentiate among volatile anesthetic and nonimmobilizer compounds. This study provides the first data regarding anesthetic sensitivity of hnAChRs. METHODS: alpha2beta4, alpha3beta4, and alphaabeta2 hnAChRs were expressed in Xenopus oocytes, and effects of volatile anesthetics isoflurane and F3 (1-chioro-1,2,2-triflurocyclobutane, 1A) and nonimmobilizers F6 (1,2-dichlorohexafluorocyclobutane, 2N) and F8 (2,3-dichlorooctafluorobutane) on the peak acetylcholine-gated currents were studied using the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique. RESULTS: Isoflurane and F3 inhibited all the hnAChRs tested in a concentration-dependent manner. Isoflurane at a concentration corresponding to 1 minimum alveolar concentration (MAC) inhibited 83, 69, and 71% of ACh-induced currents in alpha2beta4, alpha3beta4, and alpha4beta2 hnAChRs, respectively, and 1 MAC of F3 inhibited 64, 44, and 61% of currents gated in those receptors. F6 (8-34 microM) did not cause any changes in currents gated by any of the receptors tested. F8 (4-18 microM) did not alter the currents gated in either alpha3beta4 or alpha4beta2 receptors, but caused a small potentiation of alpha2beta4 hnAChRs without a concentration-response relation. CONCLUSION: The in vivo potency and effectiveness of volatile anesthetic and nonimmobilizer compounds were consistent with their actions on hnAChRs expressed in a recombinant expression system, suggesting a potential participation of these receptors in the mechanisms of anesthesia.  (+info)

Pharmacokinetics of chlorofluorocarbon and hydrofluoroalkane metered-dose inhaler formulations of beclomethasone dipropionate. (7/545)

AIMS: To compare the pharmacokinetic profile of Beclazone (beclomethasone dipropionate) in its chlorofluorocarbon (CFC)-based and CFC-free formulations. METHODS: Ten healthy adults received a single 1,000 microg nominal dose (ex-valve) of beclomethasone dipropionate from a CFC inhaler (BEC-CFC) or from a CFC-free inhaler containing hydrofluoroalkane (HFA)-134a (BEC-HFA) in an open-label, randomized, two-way, crossover study. Blood samples were collected predose and over 12 h after inhalation. Comparisons were made of maximum plasma concentration of beclomethasone 17-monopropionate (17-BMP) (Cmax), and area under the plasma concentration vs time curve (AUC). RESULTS: The tmax was significantly (P<0.05) earlier with BEC-HFA and plasma levels were significantly higher following administration of BEC-HFA than BEC-CFC. Geometric mean values for AUC were 1.5 fold greater (90% CI 1.3-1.9) and for Cmax were 1.9 fold greater (90% CI 1.6-2.6) following BEC-HFA than BEC-CFC. CONCLUSIONS: Our data in healthy volunteers would not be consistent with the manufacturers' recommendation for a microgram equivalent (1:1) nominal dose switch between these HFA and CFC formulations. Further well designed trials are required in asthmatic patients to properly define their respective dose-response relationships for antiasthmatic and systemic adverse effects.  (+info)

The acute, genetic, developmental, and inhalation toxicology of 1,1,1,3,3-pentafluoropropane (HFC 245fa). (8/545)

1,1,1,3,3-Pentafluoropropane (HFC 245fa) is a volatile, low boiling liquid. It was inactive in a reverse mutation (Ames) assay using five strains of Salmonella typhimurium and one strain of Escherichia coli. It was also inactive in an in vivo mouse micronucleus assay with exposures of 101,000 ppm. In a chromosome aberration study with human lymphocytes, some activity was seen when cell cultures were exposed to atmospheres of 30% v/v or higher for 24 h without metabolic activation. No activity was seen in assays using less than 30% v/v or exposure times of less than 24 h. No activity was seen in the presence of metabolic activation even with exposures of 70%. It was not toxic by the dermal route. There was no mortality or significant signs of toxicity when rats and mice were given 4- h exposures to levels of 203,000 ppm or 101,000 ppm of HFC 245fa, respectively. In a cardiac sensitization study with dogs involving intravenous administration of epinephrine, the no observed effect level (NOEL) was 34,000 ppm and the threshold for a response was 44,000 ppm. In a rat inhalation, developmental toxicity study, a slight reduction in pup weight was seen at 50,000 ppm, but not at 10,000 ppm. There were no developmental effects at any level. A series of three inhalation toxicity studies were conducted. All involved daily 6-h exposures up to 50,000 ppm. The first study involved 14 consecutive snout-only exposures. There were no treatment-related effects on body weight, survival, or histologic parameters. BUN, GPT, and GOT levels frequently were elevated compared to controls , whereas cholesterol levels tended to be lower. The second study involved 28 consecutive whole-body exposures. Again, there were no treatment related effects on body weight, survival, or histological parameters. Urine volume was increased. Increases were also seen in several red blood cell parameters. These may be related to partial dehydration. Increases were seen in BUN levels and alkaline phosphatase (AP), GPT, GOT and CPK activities, primarily in rats exposed at 10,000 and 50,000 ppm. Urinary fluoride levels were also elevated in an exposure- related pattern. In the third study, whole-body exposures were conducted 5 days per week for 13 weeks. There were no treatment-related effects on survival, clinical observations, body weight gain, or food consumption. Urine volumes were increased, urinary fluoride levels were elevated, and increases were seen in red blood cell counts, and related parameters and increases were seen in AP, GOT, GPT and CPK activities. These effects were seen in the 10,000 and 50,000 ppm exposure level groups. Histopathologic examination did not show any effects on the kidney, liver, or lungs. There was an increased incidence of myocarditis in all animals exposed at 50,000 ppm and the majority exposed at 10,000 ppm. It was described as mild. Based on these findings, 2000 ppm appears to be a no observed adverse effect level.  (+info)