Evidence of hypoxic areas within the arterial wall in vivo. (1/721)

The anoxemia theory of atherosclerosis states that an imbalance between the demand and supply of oxygen in the arterial wall is a key factor for the development of atherosclerotic lesions. Direct in vitro and in situ measurements have shown that PO2 is decreased in the more deeply situated parts of the media, but the degree of hypoxia in vivo or the distribution of hypoxia along the arterial tree is not known. For this reason, we have developed a method for the detection of hypoxia in the arterial wall in vivo by using a hypoxia marker, 7-(4'-(2-nitroimidazol-1-yl)-butyl)-theophylline, that may be visualized by immunofluorescence. In the present study, we have used this method in rabbits with experimentally induced atherosclerosis. Our results indicate that zones of hypoxia occur at depth in the atherosclerotic plaque. The mechanism was probably an impaired oxygen diffusion capacity due to the thickness of the lesion, together with high oxygen consumption by the foam cells. Thus, we have for the first time demonstrated that hypoxia actually does exist in the arterial wall in vivo, lending support to the anoxemia theory of atherosclerosis.  (+info)

A bioluminescence method for the mapping of local ATP concentrations within the arterial wall, with potential to assess the in vivo situation. (2/721)

According to the anoxemia theory of atherosclerosis, an imbalance between the demand for and supply of oxygen and nutrients in the arterial wall is a key factor in atherogenesis. However, the energy metabolic state of the arterial tissue in vivo is largely unknown. We applied a bioluminescence method, metabolic imaging, to study local ATP concentrations in cryosections of normal pig and atherosclerotic and normal rabbit aorta. Some vessels were subjected to energy metabolic restrictions by incubation at different oxygen and glucose concentrations and others were rapidly frozen in liquid nitrogen to reflect the in vivo situation. Local ATP concentrations and the ATP distribution at a microscale was dependent on oxygen as well as glucose concentrations during incubation. ATP depletion was seen in the mid media of pig aorta in all incubations, but only at low oxygen concentration without glucose in the media of the thinner rabbit aorta. ATP-depleted zones were seen deep in pig media (>750 microm from the lumen) and in rabbit plaques (>300 micrometer+ from the lumen) even at high oxygen (pig 75% O2 and rabbit 21% O2) and glucose concentrations (5.6 mmol/L glucose). This observation probably illustrates an insufficient diffusion of glucose, which highlights the importance of studying the conditions for diffusion not only of oxygen but also of other metabolites in the arterial wall. In rapidly frozen vessels the medial ATP concentration was shown to be 0.6 to 0.8 micromol/g wet weight (both pig and rabbit aorta) and in pig aorta a gradient could be seen indicating higher ATP concentrations at the lumenal side. We propose that metabolic imaging, as applied to snap-frozen tissue, may be used to assess the energy metabolic situation in the arterial wall in vivo. The spatial resolution allows the detection of local variations within the arterial tree. However, steep concentration gradients (eg, near the border of the tissue) will be underestimated. The method may be extended to include determinations of glucose and lactate concentrations and will be used in parallel with an established method to assess hypoxia in the arterial wall in vivo.  (+info)

Reperfusion injury in livers due to gentle in situ organ manipulation during harvest involves hypoxia and free radicals. (3/721)

Kupffer cell-dependent injury in livers gently manipulated during harvest develops upon transplantation; however, underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Thus, the purpose of this study was to identify factors involved in mechanisms of injury. Livers from female Sprague-Dawley rats (200-230 g) were cold stored for 24 h in University of Wisconsin solution. Subsequently, livers were perfused at 37 degrees C with oxygen-saturated Krebs-Henseleit buffer containing fluorescein-dextran to assess microcirculation. Cell death was assessed by uptake of trypan blue, a vital dye. Minimal dissection during harvest had no effects on sinusoidal lining cells; however, gentle organ manipulation dramatically increased trypan blue uptake about 5-fold (p <.05). In contrast, perfusion with N2-saturated buffer after cold storage totally prevented cell death due to manipulation. At harvest, portal venous pressure was increased significantly by 70% due to manipulation. Furthermore, vascular space and microcirculation were decreased by more than 50% (p <.05), reflecting the rate of entry and exit of fluorescein-dextran. Pimonidazole, a 2-nitroimidazole marker, was given to rats before harvest to detect hypoxia in liver. Pimonidazole adduct binding was increased significantly about 2-fold by manipulation. To detect free radical adducts by electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy in bile, C-phenyl-N-tert-butylnitrone was given as spin trapping reagent to the donor before operation. Free radical formation was increased about 3-fold by organ manipulation (p <.05). Donors given gadolinium chloride, a selective Kupffer cell toxicant, or dietary glycine, which prevents activation of Kupffer cells, significantly blunted microcirculatory disturbances, hypoxia, and death of endothelial lining cells. These data indicate for the first time that gentle organ manipulation during harvest causes oxygen-dependent reperfusion injury to endothelial lining cells via mechanisms involving hepatic microcirculation, hypoxia, and Kupffer cells.  (+info)

Hepatocellular hypoxia-induced vascular endothelial growth factor expression and angiogenesis in experimental biliary cirrhosis. (4/721)

We tested the potential role of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and of fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) in the angiogenesis associated with experimental liver fibrogenesis induced by common bile duct ligation in Sprague-Dawley rats. In normal rats, VEGF and FGF-2 immunoreactivities were restricted to less than 3% of hepatocytes. One week after bile duct ligation, hypoxia was demonstrated by the immunodetection of pimonidazole adducts unevenly distributed throughout the lobule. After 2 weeks, hypoxia and VEGF expression were detected in >95% of hepatocytes and coexisted with an increase in periportal vascular endothelial cell proliferation, as ascertained by Ki67 immunolabeling. Subsequently, at 3 weeks the density of von Willebrand-labeled vascular section in fibrotic areas significantly increased. Semiquantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction showed that VEGF(120) and VEGF(164) transcripts, that correspond to secreted isoforms, increased within 2 weeks, while VEGF(188) transcripts remained unchanged. FGF-2 mainly consisting of a 22-kd isoform, according to Western blot, was identified by immunohistochemistry in 49% and 100% of hepatocytes at 3 and 7 weeks, respectively. Our data provide evidence that in biliary-type liver fibrogenesis, angiogenesis is stimulated primarily by VEGF in response to hepatocellular hypoxia while FGF-2 likely contributes to the maintenance of angiogenesis at later stages.  (+info)

Benznidazole, a drug employed in the treatment of Chagas' disease, down-regulates the synthesis of nitrite and cytokines by murine stimulated macrophages. (5/721)

Benznidazole (BZL) is a nitroheterocyclic drug employed in the chemotherapy of Chagas' disease, a protozoan disease caused by Trypanosoma cruzi. Because this parasite mostly replicates in macrophages, we investigated whether BZL was likely to modify the synthesis of macrophage mediators such as nitrite, tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), IL-1beta, IL-6 and IL-10. Control and stimulated murine macrophages (lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and/or interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma)) were treated with BZL and measurements were carried out in culture supernatants collected 24 h later. Synthesis of nitrite, IL-6 and IL-10 was maximal upon combined stimulation with LPS + IFN-gamma, whereas lower amounts of the three mediators were detected when both stimuli were given alone. BZL treatment significantly reduced nitrite, IL-6 and IL-10 production, to undetectable levels in some cases, particularly IL-6 and IL-10. LPS was the most potent stimulus of IL-1beta and TNF-alpha production, followed by LPS + IFN-gamma and IFN-gamma in decreasing order. BZL partly inhibited TNF-alpha synthesis, but this effect was smaller than that observed for nitrite, IL-6 and IL-10. LPS-induced production of IL-1beta was also affected by BZL. Semiquantification of gene expression for inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) showed that BZL completely inhibited iNOS gene induction by IFN-gamma, and resulted in respective inhibitions of 30% and 50% with LPS- and LPS + IFN-gamma-stimulated cells. BZL was not cytotoxic on macrophage cultures, as shown by the lactate dehydrogenase activity. Besides its trypanocidal activity, BZL may also alter the balance between pro- and anti-inflammatory mediators with important consequences for the course of T. cruzi infection.  (+info)

Improved fidelity of thermostable ligases for detection of microsatellite repeat sequences using nucleoside analogs. (6/721)

Microsatellite repeats consisting of dinucleotide sequences are ubiquitous in the human genome and have proven useful for linkage analysis, positional cloning and forensic identification purposes. In this study, the potential of utilizing the ligase detection reaction for the analysis of such microsatellite repeat sequences was investigated. Initially, the fidelity of thermostable DNA ligases was measured for model dinucleotide repeat sequences. Subsequently, the effect of modified oligonucleotides on ligation fidelity for dinucleotide repeats was determined using the nucleoside analogs nitroimidazole, inosine, 7-deazaguanosine and 2-pyrimidinone, as well as natural base mismatches. The measured error rates for a standard dinucleotide template indicated that the nitroimidazole nucleoside analogs could be used to increase the fidelity of ligation when compared to unmodified primers. Furthermore, use of formamide in the ligation buffer also increased ligation fidelity for dinucleotide repeat sequences. Using ligation-based assays to detect polymorphic alleles of microsatellite repeats in the human genome opens the possibility of using array-based typing of these loci for human identification, loss-of-heterozygosity studies and linkage analysis.  (+info)

Soluble platelet selectin (sP-selectin) and soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1) decrease during therapy with benznidazole in children with indeterminate form of Chagas' disease. (7/721)

The immune response against Trypanosoma cruzi infection has been associated with both protection and pathogenesis. Central events in host defence system- and immune-mediated damage are tightly regulated by cell adhesion molecules (CAM). Levels of sP-selectin and sVCAM-1 were measured in sera from 41 children with the indeterminate phase of Chagas' disease. Simultaneously, levels of soluble adhesion molecule were also quantified in Chagas' disease children undergoing specific chemotherapy with benznidazole. Levels of sP-selectin and sVCAM-1 were found to be elevated in children with indeterminate Chagas' disease before aetiologic therapy was started. However, a small group of patients showed sP-selectin and sVCAM-1 levels comparable to those of non-infected children. A positive correlation between levels of sVCAM-1 and sP-selectin in sera from Chagas' disease patients was found. There was a significantly greater decrease in the titres of sP-selectin and sVCAM-1 in those children receiving benznidazole therapy compared with those children receiving placebo. Measurement of soluble adhesion molecules revealed differences in the activation of the immune system in children with the indeterminate form of Chagas' disease. The early decrease of sP-selectin and sVCAM-1 levels after anti-parasitic treatment suggests that these molecules might be valuable indicators of effective parasitologic clearance.  (+info)

Activities of the triazole derivative SCH 56592 (posaconazole) against drug-resistant strains of the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) cruzi in immunocompetent and immunosuppressed murine hosts. (8/721)

We have studied the in vivo activity of the new experimental triazole derivative SCH 56592 (posaconazole) against a variety of strains of the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas' disease, in both immunocompetent and immunosuppressed murine hosts. The T. cruzi strains used in the study were previously characterized as susceptible (CL), partially resistant (Y), or highly resistant (Colombiana, SC-28, and VL-10) to the drugs currently in clinical use, nifurtimox and benznidazole. Furthermore, all strains are completely resistant to conventional antifungal azoles, such as ketoconazole. In the first study, acute infections with the CL, Y, and Colombiana strains in both normal and cyclophosphamide-immunosuppressed mice were treated orally, starting 4 days postinfection (p.i.), for 20 consecutive daily doses. The results indicated that in immunocompetent animals SCH 56592 at 20 mg/kg of body weight/day provided protection (80 to 90%) against death caused by all strains, a level comparable or superior to that provided by the optimal dose of benznidazole (100 mg/kg/day). Evaluation of parasitological cure revealed that SCH 56592 was able to cure 90 to 100% of the surviving animals infected with the CL and Y strains and 50% of those which received the benznidazole- and nifurtimox-resistant Colombiana strain. Immunosuppression markedly reduced the mean survival time of untreated mice infected with any of the strains, but this was not observed for the groups which received SCH 56592 at 20 mg/kg/day or benznidazole at 100 mg/kg/day. However, the overall cure rates were higher for animals treated with SCH 56592 than among those treated with benznidazole. The results were confirmed in a second study, using the same model but a longer (43-dose) treatment period. Finally, a model for the chronic disease in which oral treatment was started 120 days p.i. and consisted of 20 daily consecutive doses was investigated. The results showed that SCH 56592 at 20 mg/kg/day was able to induce a statistically significant increase in survival of animals infected with all strains, while benznidazole at 100 mg/kg/day was able to increase survival only in animals infected with the Colombiana strain. Moreover, the triazole was able to induce parasitological cures in 50 to 60% of surviving animals, irrespective of the infecting strain, while no cures were obtained with benznidazole. Taken together, the results demonstrate that SCH 56592 has in vivo trypanocidal activity, even against T. cruzi strains naturally resistant to nitrofurans, nitroimidazoles, and conventional antifungal azoles, and that this activity is retained to a large extent in immunosuppressed hosts.  (+info)