Background: Hypoxia represents both an outcome of cardiopulmonary diseases and a trigger for severe pulmonary complications as pulmonary hypertension. Because nitric oxide (NO) is a critical mediator in the development of pulmonary hypertension, the modulators of its downstream function may become target of pharmacological interventions aimed at alleviating the impact of this condition. Here, we investigate the effects of an early administration of phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitor in rats where pulmonary artery hypertension was induced by chronic exposure to hypoxia. Methods: Rats were divided into three groups: normoxic control, hypoxic with no treatments (2 weeks breathing an atmosphere containing 10% oxygen), and hypoxic treated with sildenafil (1.4 mg/Kg per day in 0.3mL i.p.). After sacrifice, hearts and lungs were removed and harvested for analyses. Results: Sildenafil reduced hypoxia-induced right ventricle hypertrophy without effects in lung hypertrophy, and blunted the increase in right ventricle pressure without effects on left ventricle pressure. Furthermore, the NO-producing systems (i.e., the phosphorylation of the endothelial isoforms of NO synthase that was measured in both myocardial and lung tissues), and the blood NO stores (i.e., the plasma level of nitrates and nitrites) were up-regulated by sildenafil. We did not find significant effects of sildenafil on weight and hemoglobin concentration. Morphological analysis in lung biopsies revealed that 2- week hypoxia increased the frequency of small pulmonary vessels leaving large vessels unaffected. Finally, ultrastructural analysis showed that sildenafil down-regulated the hypoxia-induced increase in the thickness of the pulmonary basal lamina. Conclusions: In this model of pulmonary hypertension, sildenafil contrasts the negative effects of hypoxia on pulmonary vascular and right ventricle remodeling. This action does not only encompass the canonical vasomodulatory effect, but involves several Nydegger et al. PDE-5 Inhibition in Cardiopulmonary Disease biochemical pathways. Although the human pathological model is certainly more complex than that described here (for example, the inflammatory issue), the potential role of phosphodiesterase-5 for long-term treatment, and perhaps prevention, of pulmonary hypertension is worthy of investigation.
|Titolo:||Phosphodiesterase-5 Inhibition Alleviates Pulmonary Hypertension and Basal Lamina Thickening in Rats Challenged by Chronic Hypoxia|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore BIO/10 - Biochimica|
|Data di pubblicazione:||27-mar-2018|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.3389/fphys.2018.00289|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01 - Articolo su periodico|