Publications by authors named "Kaushik M Desai"

19 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Glycemic, insulinemic and methylglyoxal postprandial responses to starches alone or in whole diets in dogs versus cats: Relating the concept of glycemic index to metabolic responses and gene expression.

Comp Biochem Physiol A Mol Integr Physiol 2021 Jul 30;257:110973. Epub 2021 Apr 30.

Toxicology Graduate Program, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5B3, Canada; Veterinary Biomedical Sciences, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5B4, Canada. Electronic address:

Species differences between domestic cats (Felis catus) and dogs (Canis familiaris) has led to differences in their ability to digest, absorb and metabolize carbohydrates through poorly characterized mechanisms. The current study aimed to first examine biopsied small intestine, pancreas, liver and skeletal muscle from laboratory beagles and domestic cats for mRNA expression of key enzymes involved in starch digestion (amylase), glucose transport (sodium-dependent SGLTs and -independent glucose transporters, GLUT) and glucose metabolism (hexokinase and glucokinase). Cats had lower mRNA expression of most genes examined in almost all tissues compared to dogs (p < 0.05). Next, postprandial glucose, insulin, methylglyoxal (a toxic glucose metabolite) and d-lactate (metabolite of methylglyoxal) after single feedings of different starch sources were tested in fasted dogs and cats. After feeding pure glucose, peak postprandial blood glucose and methylglyoxal were surprisingly similar between dogs and cats, except cats had a longer time to peak and a greater area under the curve consistent with lower glycolytic enzyme expression. After feeding starches or whole diets to dogs, postprandial glycemic response, glycemic index, insulin, methylglyoxal and d-lactate followed reported glycemic index trends in humans. In contrast, cats showed very low to negligible postprandial glycemic responses and low insulin after feeding different starch sources, but not whole diets, with no relationship to methylglyoxal or d-lactate. Thus, the concept of glycemic index appears valid in dogs, but not cats. Differences in amylase, glucose transporters, and glycolytic enzymes are consistent with species differences in starch and glucose handling between cats and dogs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cbpa.2021.110973DOI Listing
July 2021

Pharmacological evaluation of novel alagebrium analogs as methylglyoxal scavengers in vitro in cardiac myocytes and in vivo in SD rats.

Int J Cardiol 2016 Nov 15;223:581-589. Epub 2016 Aug 15.

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.

Background: Methylglyoxal (MG) is a byproduct of glucose metabolism and an inducer of advanced glycation end products (AGEs). AGEs are implicated in the pathogenesis of diabetes as well as hypertension. Most of the currently available MG scavengers are non-specific and have other effects as well. Alagebrium (ALA), developed by Alteon Corporation is a MG scavenger. Thus the aim of the present study was to investigate the potential of novel ALA analogs as possible MG scavengers and whether they could prevent any deleterious effects of MG.

Methods And Results: MG levels were measured by HPLC. The different biochemical and molecular parameters were measured by assay kits, RT-PCR and immunocytochemistry. Out of the 15 ALA analogs tested in vitro, compound no. 13 was found to be an effective inhibitor of MG in a concentration and time dependent manner. Compound no. 13 significantly attenuated the MG levels in vitro in MG treated cultured H9C2 cardiomyocytes as well as in vivo in MG treated SD rats. MG induced oxidative stress and apoptosis were attenuated by pretreatment of H9C2 cardiac myocytes with compound no. 13. MG induced cardiac hypertrophy and apoptosis were also attenuated by treating MG treated SD rats with compound no. 13.

Conclusion: Our results indicate compound 13 as an effective inhibitor of MG in vitro in cultured cardiomyocytes and in vivo in SD rats and thus it may prove very useful in blocking the multiple deleterious effects of MG, including AGEs and vascular complications of diabetes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijcard.2016.08.243DOI Listing
November 2016

Alagebrium attenuates methylglyoxal induced oxidative stress and AGE formation in H9C2 cardiac myocytes.

Life Sci 2016 Feb 6;146:8-14. Epub 2016 Jan 6.

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.

Aim: Diabetes mellitus associated cardiovascular complications are a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Methylglyoxal (MG) is a reactive ketoaldehyde and a byproduct of glucose metabolism and an inducer of advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs). Alagebrium (ALA) is an AGEs crosslink breaker, however, the effects of ALA on MG levels and its consequences in cultured rat cardiomyocytes are not known. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of high glucose and MG on cultured rat cardiomyocytes and to investigate whether ALA could prevent any deleterious effects of high glucose and MG in these cells.

Main Methods: MG levels were determined by HPLC. The expression of different genes was measured by RT-PCR. Oxidative stress and AGEs formation was determined by DCF probe and immunocytochemistry respectively.

Key Findings: High glucose- and MG treated- cardiomyocytes developed a significant increase in MG, and the expression for caspase-3, Bax, RAGE and NF-KB, which were all attenuated after pretreatment with ALA. A significant increase in reactive oxygen species generation and AGEs formation in high glucose- and MG treated- cultured cardiomyocytes was also observed, which was attenuated after pretreatment with ALA.

Significance: ALA may have a preventive role against the deleterious effects of high glucose and MG in the heart. Prevention of dicarbonyl-induced AGEs, by safer and specific scavengers of MG is an attractive therapeutic option.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.lfs.2016.01.006DOI Listing
February 2016

Methylglyoxal, a reactive glucose metabolite, increases renin angiotensin aldosterone and blood pressure in male Sprague-Dawley rats.

Am J Hypertens 2014 Mar 16;27(3):308-16. Epub 2014 Jan 16.

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada.

Background: The majority of people with diabetes develop hypertension along with increased activity of the renin-angiotensin system. Methylglyoxal, a reactive glucose metabolite, is elevated in diabetic patients. We investigated the effects of methylglyoxal on the renin-angiotensin system and blood pressure.

Methods: Male Sprague-Dawley rats were treated with a continuous infusion of methylglyoxal with a minipump for 4 weeks. Organs/tissues and cultured vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) were used for molecular studies. High-performance liquid chromatography, Western blotting, and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction were used to measure methylglyoxal, proteins, and mRNA, respectively. Small interfering RNA for angiotensinogen and the receptor for advanced glycation endproducts (RAGE) were used to study mechanisms.

Results: Methylglyoxal-treated rats developed a significant increase in blood pressure and plasma levels of aldosterone, renin, angiotensin, and catecholamines. Methylglyoxal level and protein and mRNA for angiotensin, AT1 receptor, adrenergic α1D receptor, and renin were significantly increased in the aorta and/or kidney of methylglyoxal-treated rats, a novel finding. Alagebrium attenuated the above effects of methylgloyxal. Treatment of cultured VSMCs with methylglyoxal or high glucose (25 mM) significantly increased cellular methylglyoxal and protein and mRNA for nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB), angiotensin, AT1 receptor, and α1D receptor, which were prevented by inhibition of NF-κB, and by alagebrium. Silencing of mRNA for RAGE prevented the increase in NF-kB induced by methylglyoxal. Silencing of mRNA for angiotensinogen prevented the increase in NF-κB, angiotensin, AT1 receptor, and α1D receptor.

Conclusions: Methylglyoxal activates NF-κB through RAGE and thereby increases renin-angiotensin levels, a novel finding, and a probable mechanism of increase in blood pressure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ajh/hpt281DOI Listing
March 2014

Increased methylglyoxal formation with upregulation of renin angiotensin system in fructose fed Sprague Dawley rats.

PLoS One 2013 10;8(9):e74212. Epub 2013 Sep 10.

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.

The current epidemic of obesity and type 2 diabetes is attributed to a high carbohydrate diet, containing mainly high fructose corn syrup and sucrose. More than two thirds of diabetic patients have hypertension. Methylglyoxal is a highly reactive dicarbonyl generated during glucose and fructose metabolism, and a major precursor of advanced glycation end products (AGEs). Plasma methylglyoxal levels are increased in hypertensive rats and diabetic patients. Our aim was to examine the levels of methylglyoxal, mediators of the renin angiotensin system and blood pressure in male Sprague-Dawley rats treated with a high fructose diet (60% of total calories) for 4 months. The thoracic aorta and kidney were used for molecular studies, along with cultured vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs). HPLC, Western blotting and Q-PCR were used to measure methylglyoxal and reduced glutathione (GSH), proteins and mRNA, respectively. Fructose treated rats developed a significant increase in blood pressure. Methylglyoxal level and protein and mRNA for angiotensin II, AT1 receptor, adrenergic α1D receptor and renin were significantly increased, whereas GSH levels were decreased, in the aorta and/or kidney of fructose fed rats. The protein expression of the receptor for AGEs (RAGE) and NF-κB were also significantly increased in the aorta of fructose fed rats. MG treated VSMCs showed increased protein for angiotensin II, AT1 receptor, and α1D receptor. The effects of methylglyoxal were attenuated by metformin, a methylglyoxal scavenger and AGEs inhibitor. In conclusion, we report a strong association between elevated levels of methylglyoxal, RAGE, NF-κB, mediators of the renin angiotensin system and blood pressure in high fructose diet fed rats.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0074212PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3769342PMC
June 2014

Hydrogen sulfide and the metabolic syndrome.

Expert Rev Clin Pharmacol 2011 Jan;4(1):63-73

College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, 107 Wiggins Road, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5E5, Canada.

The metabolic syndrome is a group of abnormalities including obesity, high blood pressure, hyperinsulinemia, high blood glucose levels and hyperlipidemia that together greatly increase the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and Type 2 diabetes. Hydrogen sulfide (H(2)S) is a vasodilatory gasotransmitter mediator in the cardiovascular system, proposed as an endothelium-derived relaxing factor. A lack of H(2)S and its synthesizing enzyme, cystathionine γ-lyase, in the vasculature causes hypertension, whereas an increase in the pancreas reduces insulin secretion. Thus, research is making inroads to determine whether H(2)S is involved in the pathogenesis of the metabolic syndrome. Several laboratories are synthesizing and testing clinically used drugs that release H(2)S. Some of these compounds are being tested for effectiveness in the metabolic syndrome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1586/ecp.10.133DOI Listing
January 2011

Chronic methylglyoxal infusion by minipump causes pancreatic beta-cell dysfunction and induces type 2 diabetes in Sprague-Dawley rats.

Diabetes 2011 Mar 7;60(3):899-908. Epub 2011 Feb 7.

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada.

Objective: The incidence of high dietary carbohydrate-induced type 2 diabetes is increasing worldwide. Methylglyoxal (MG) is a reactive glucose metabolite and a major precursor of advanced glycation end products (AGEs). MG levels are elevated in diabetic patients. We investigated the effects of chronic administration of MG on glucose tolerance and β-cell insulin secreting mechanism in 12-week-old male Sprague-Dawley rats.

Research Design And Methods: MG (60 mg/kg/day) or 0.9% saline was administered by continuous infusion with a minipump for 28 days. We performed glucose and insulin tolerance tests and measured adipose tissue glucose uptake and insulin secretion from isolated pancreatic islets. We also used cultured INS-1E cells, a pancreatic β-cell line, for molecular studies. Western blotting, quantitative PCR, immunohistochemistry, and transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) assay were performed.

Results: In rats treated with MG and MG + l-buthionine sulfoximine (BSO), MG levels were significantly elevated in plasma, pancreas, adipose tissue, and skeletal muscle; fasting plasma glucose was elevated, whereas insulin and glutathione were reduced. These two groups also had impaired glucose tolerance, reduced GLUT-4, phosphoinositide-3-kinase activity, and insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in adipose tissue. In the pancreatic β-cells, MG and MG + BSO reduced insulin secretion, pancreatic duodenal homeobox-1, MafA, GLUT-2, and glucokinase expression; increased C/EBPβ, nuclear factor-κB, MG-induced AGE, N(ε)-carboxymeythyllysine, and receptor for AGEs expression; and caused apoptosis. Alagebrium, an MG scavenger and an AGE-breaking compound, attenuated the effects of MG.

Conclusions: Chronic MG induces biochemical and molecular abnormalities characteristic of type 2 diabetes and is a possible mediator of high carbohydrate-induced type 2 diabetes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2337/db10-0627DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3046851PMC
March 2011

Methylglyoxal scavengers attenuate endothelial dysfunction induced by methylglyoxal and high concentrations of glucose.

Br J Pharmacol 2010 Dec;161(8):1843-56

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.

Background And Purpose: Endothelial dysfunction is a feature of hypertension and diabetes. Methylglyoxal (MG) is a reactive dicarbonyl metabolite of glucose and its levels are elevated in spontaneously hypertensive rats and in diabetic patients. We investigated if MG induces endothelial dysfunction and whether MG scavengers can prevent endothelial dysfunction induced by MG and high glucose concentrations.

Experimental Approach: Endothelium-dependent relaxation was studied in aortic rings from Sprague-Dawley rats. We also used cultured rat aortic and human umbilical vein endothelial cells. The MG was measured by HPLC and Western blotting and assay kits were used.

Key Results: Incubation of aortic rings with MG (30 µM) or high glucose (25 mM) attenuated endothelium-dependent, acetylcholine-induced relaxation, which was restored by two different MG scavengers, aminoguanidine (100 µM) and N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) (600 µM). Treatment of cultured endothelial cells with MG or high glucose increased cellular MG levels, effects prevented by aminoguanidine and NAC. In cultured endothelial cells, MG and high glucose reduced basal and bradykinin-stimulated nitric oxide (NO) production, cGMP levels, and serine-1177 phosphorylation and activity of endothelial NO synthase (eNOS), without affecting threonine-495 and Akt phosphorylation or total eNOS protein. These effects of MG and high glucose were attenuated by aminoguanidine or NAC.

Conclusions And Implications: Our results show for the first time that MG reduced serine-1177 phosphorylation, activity of eNOS and NO production. MG caused endothelial dysfunction similar to that induced by high glucose. Specific and safe MG scavengers have potential to prevent endothelial dysfunction induced by MG and high glucose concentrations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1476-5381.2010.01017.xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3010587PMC
December 2010

Oxidative stress and aging: is methylglyoxal the hidden enemy?

Can J Physiol Pharmacol 2010 Mar;88(3):273-84

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5E5, Canada.

Aging is a multifactorial process that involves changes at the cellular, tissue, organ and the whole body levels resulting in decreased functioning, development of diseases, and ultimately death. Oxidative stress is believed to be a very important factor in causing aging and age-related diseases. Oxidative stress is caused by an imbalance between oxidants such as reactive oxygen species (ROS) and antioxidants. ROS are produced from the mitochondrial electron transport chain and many oxidative reactions. Methylglyoxal (MG) is a highly reactive dicarbonyl metabolite formed during glucose, protein and fatty acid metabolism. MG levels are elevated in hyperglycemia and other conditions. An excess of MG formation can increase ROS production and cause oxidative stress. MG reacts with proteins, DNA and other biomolecules, and is a major precursor of advanced glycation end products (AGEs). AGEs are also associated with the aging process and age-related diseases such as cardiovascular complications of diabetes, neurodegenerative diseases and connective tissue disorders. AGEs also increase oxidative stress. In this review we discuss the potential role of MG in the aging process through increasing oxidative stress besides causing AGEs formation. Specific and effective scavengers and crosslink breakers of MG and AGEs are being developed and can become potential treatments to slow the aging process and prevent many diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1139/Y10-001DOI Listing
March 2010

Decreases in splanchnic vascular resistance contribute to hypotensive effects of L-serine in hypertensive rats.

Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2010 Jun 26;298(6):H1789-96. Epub 2010 Mar 26.

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, Univ. of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, S7N 5E5, Canada.

l-Serine administration reduces mean arterial pressure (MAP) in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) and Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats rendered hypertensive by chronic oral treatment with the nitric oxide synthase inhibitor N(omega)-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester (l-NAME). To determine if the fall in MAP was due to decreases in vascular resistance or cardiac output (CO), and to record regional hemodynamic effects, we measured the distribution of fluorescent microspheres to single bolus intravenous injections of l-serine (1 mmol/kg) in 14-wk-old male WKY, SHR, and l-NAME-treated WKY rats. MAP and total peripheral resistance (TPR) were significantly higher (P < 0.01), whereas CO was lower in l-NAME-treated WKY (P < 0.01) and SHR (P < 0.05). l-Serine administration led to a rapid fall in MAP (WKY 22%, l-NAME-WKY 46%, SHR 34%,) and TPR (WKY 24%, l-NAME-WKY 68%, SHR 53%), whereas CO was elevated. In WKY rats, l-serine induced an increase in blood flow only in the small intestine (53%) while it was more profound in several vascular beds of hypertensive rats [l-NAME-WKY: small intestine (238%), spleen (184%), diaphragm (85%), and liver (65%); SHR: small intestine (217%), spleen (202%), diaphragm (116%), large intestine (105%), pancreas (96%), and liver (93%)]. Pretreatment with a combination of apamin (a small calcium-activated potassium channel inhibitor) and charybdotoxin (an intermediate calcium-activated potassium channel inhibitor) abolished the l-serine-induced changes in blood flow and TPR. l-Serine acts predominantly on apamin- and charybdotoxin-sensitive potassium channels in the splanchnic circulation to increase blood flow, thereby contributing to the fall in TPR and the pronounced blood pressure-lowering effect of l-serine in hypertensive rats.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/ajpheart.00810.2009DOI Listing
June 2010

Alagebrium attenuates acute methylglyoxal-induced glucose intolerance in Sprague-Dawley rats.

Br J Pharmacol 2010 Jan 4;159(1):166-75. Epub 2009 Dec 4.

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.

Background And Purpose: Alagebrium is a breaker of cross-links in advanced glycation endproducts. However, the acute effects of alagebrium on methylglyoxal (MG), a major precursor of advanced glycation endproducts have not been reported. MG is a highly reactive endogenous metabolite, and its levels are elevated in diabetic patients. We investigated whether alagebrium attenuated the acute effects of exogenous MG on plasma MG levels, glucose tolerance and distribution of administered MG in different organs in Sprague-Dawley rats.

Experimental Approach: We measured MG levels (by HPLC), glucose tolerance, adipose tissue glucose uptake, GLUT4, insulin receptor and insulin receptor substrate 1 (IRS-1) protein expression, and phosporylated IRS-1 in rats treated with MG at doses of either 17.25 mg*kg(-1) i.p. (MG-17 i.p.) or 50 mg*kg(-1) i.v. (MG-50 i.v.) with or without alagebrium, 100 mg*kg(-1) i.p.

Key Results: Alagebrium attenuated the increased MG levels in the plasma, aorta, heart, kidney, liver, lung and urine after MG administration. In MG-treated rats, glucose tolerance was impaired, plasma insulin levels were higher and insulin-stimulated glucose uptake by adipose tissue was reduced, relative to the corresponding control groups. In rats treated with MG-50 i.v., GLUT4 protein expression and IRS-1 tyrosine phosphorylation were decreased. Alagebrium pretreatment attenuated these effects of MG. In an in vitro assay, alagebrium reduced the amount of detectable MG.

Conclusions And Implications: Alagebrium acutely attenuated MG-induced glucose intolerance, suggesting a possible preventive role for alagebrium against the harmful effects of MG.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1476-5381.2009.00469.xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2823362PMC
January 2010

L-Serine lowers while glycine increases blood pressure in chronic L-NAME-treated and spontaneously hypertensive rats.

J Hypertens 2008 Dec;26(12):2339-48

Department of Pharmacology, Department of Medicine, Royal University Hospital, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.

Objective: To determine the acute hemodynamic effects of the nonessential amino acid, glycine, and its precursor, L-serine, in normotensive and hypertensive rats.

Methods: Changes in mean arterial pressure and heart rate evoked by comparable intravenously administered doses (0.3-3.0 mmol/kg) of L-serine, D-serine and glycine were examined in anaesthetized normotensive 14-week-old male Sprague-Dawley, Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats, spontaneously hypertensive rats and WKY rats subjected to chronic nitric oxide synthase inhibition by treatment with NG nitro L-arginine methyl ester (0.7 mg/ml in drinking water for 5 days).

Results: L-Serine evoked a greater maximal fall in mean arterial pressure [L-serine vs. D-serine in Sprague-Dawley rats, mean +/- standard error of the mean values (mmHg): 30 +/- 3 vs. 20 +/- 5, P < 0.05; in control WKY rats: 46 +/- 3 vs. 30 +/- 4, P < 0.05; in NG nitro L-arginine methyl ester-treated WKY rats: 93 +/- 6 vs. 41 +/- 5, P < 0.01; in spontaneously hypertensive rats: 81 +/- 7 vs. 39 +/- 5 P < 0.01]. The effects of L-serine were significantly reduced in rats pretreated with a combination of apamin and charybdotoxin, inhibitors of the small conductance and intermediate conductance calcium-activated potassium (KCa) channels. Glycine elicited a dose-dependent fall in mean arterial pressure in normotensive WKY rats (25 +/- 4; P < 0.01) and evoked pressor responses in both spontaneously hypertensive rats (29 +/- 3; P < 0.01) and NG nitro L-arginine methyl ester-pretreated hypertensive WKY (39 +/- 5; P < 0.01) rats. Both the depressor and pressor responses to glycine were abolished by pretreatment with the N-methyl D-aspartate receptor antagonist, MK-801.

Conclusion: The profound stereo-selective antihypertensive effect of L-serine is neither mediated nor mimicked by glycine. It does not require N-methyl D-aspartate receptor activation by glycine but likely involves activation of endothelial KCa channels. L-Serine is a potential antihypertensive agent.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/hjh.0b013e328312c8a3DOI Listing
December 2008

Free radical generation by methylglyoxal in tissues.

Drug Metabol Drug Interact 2008 ;23(1-2):151-73

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.

Methylglyoxal (MG) is a reactive dicarbonyl intermediate of the glycolytic pathway. Increased oxidative stress is associated with conditions of increased MG, such as diabetes mellitus. Increased oxidative stress is due to an increase in highly reactive by-products of metabolic pathways, the so-called reactive oxygen species, such as superoxide anion, hydroxyl radical, hydrogen peroxide, nitric oxide and peroxynitrite. These reactive species react with a variety of proteins, enzymes, lipids, DNA and other molecules and disrupt their normal function. Oxidative stress causes many pathological changes that lead to vascular complications of diabetes mellitus, hypertension, neurodegenerative diseases and aging. In this review we summarize the correlation of elevated MG and various reactive oxygen species, and the enzymes that produce them or take part in their disposal, such as antioxidant enzymes and cofactors. The findings reported in various studies reviewed have started filling in gaps in our knowledge that will ultimately provide us with a clear picture of how the whole process that causes cellular dysfunction is initiated.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1515/dmdi.2008.23.1-2.151DOI Listing
September 2008

Chronic clofibrate administration prevents saline-induced endothelial dysfunction and oxidative stress in young Sprague-Dawley rats.

Clin Invest Med 2008 ;31(2):E62-70

Department of Pharmacology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5E5 Canada.

Purpose: High salt intake causes hypertension and endothelial dysfunction in young Sprague-Dawley rats. Clofibrate (clof) prevents this salt induced hypertension. We asked whether clof can prevent salt-induced endothelial dysfunction, and if so, its mechanism. We also questioned whether high salt intake can induce endothelial dysfunction without hypertension in older animals.

Methods: Young (Y, 5 weeks) and old (O, 53 weeks) male Sprague-Dawley rats were given either vehicle (Con, 20 mM Na2CO3) or 0.9% NaCl (Sal) to drink for three weeks. Some young rats received clof (80 mg/d) in their drinking fluid. After three weeks, we measured mean arterial pressure (MAP), endothelial function, by comparing hypotensive responses to acetylcholine (ACh, endothelium dependent) and sodium nitroprusside (SNP, endothelium independent), plasma total nitrite+nitrate levels (PNOx), by the Griess reaction, and aortic superoxide production by lucigenin chemiluminescence.

Results: Carotid artery MAP did not change in O. Sal-Y developed hypertension: 133+/-3 vs. 114+/-2 mmHg, P < 0.001, which was prevented by clof: 105+/-2 mmHg. ACh induced a similar dose dependent hypotensive response in Con-O and Sal-O that was inhibited by L-NAME (100mg/kg i.v.). Responses to ACh were blunted in Sal-Y but not in Con-Y. Further, L-NAME inhibited ACh responses only in Con-Y. The response to SNP was similar in all animals. Importantly, the ACh-induced hypotensive response was potentiated in clof+Sal-Y, an effect which was attenuated by blocking calcium-activated potassium channels (KCa) with a combination of apamin (50 ug/kg i.v.) + charybdotoxin (50 ug/kg i.v.), but not by L-NAME. PNOx was reduced in Sal-Y compared to Con-Y (2.09+/-0.26 vs. 4.8+/-0.35 microM, P < 0.001), but not in Sal-O. Aortic superoxide production was higher (P < 0.001) in Sal-Y (2388+/-40 milliunits/mg/min) than Sal-O (1107+/-159 milliunits/mg/min), but was reduced by clof (1378+/-64 milliunits/mg/min; P < 0.001).

Conclusions: High salt intake increases oxidative stress in young animals, leading to impaired nitric oxide activity and endothelial dysfunction. Clofibrate prevents endothelial dysfunction partly through reduced O2 - formation but mainly via selective activation of KCa channels. Older animals are resistant to both salt induced hypertension and oxidative stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.25011/cim.v31i2.3365DOI Listing
May 2008

Nitric oxide synthase inhibition promotes endothelium-dependent vasodilatation and the antihypertensive effect of L-serine.

Hypertension 2008 Mar 22;51(3):791-6. Epub 2008 Jan 22.

Department of Pharmacology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.

L-serine is a precursor of central neurotransmitters. Its cardiovascular effects are largely unstudied. We compared the in vitro effects of L-serine and acetylcholine in phenylephrine-constricted third-order branches of mesenteric arterioles in the NO synthase inhibitor N(G)-nitro L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME), pretreated hypertensive rats, and a control group of normotensive male Sprague-Dawley rats. The changes in mean arterial pressure and heart rate evoked by acute intravenous infusion of either L-serine (0.1 to 3.0 mmol/kg) or acetylcholine (0.1 to 10.0 nmol/kg) were determined in anesthetized rats. L-serine evoked concentration-dependent (10 to 200 micromol/L) vasodilatation in endothelium-intact but not in endothelium-denuded vessels. It was abolished by the inclusion of a combination of apamin (SK(Ca) channel inhibitor) and TRAM-34 (IK(Ca) channel inhibitor) or ouabain (Na(+) pump inhibitor) and Ba(2+) (K(ir) channel inhibitor) or when the vessels were constricted by potassium chloride. The maximal response to L-serine was higher in the L-NAME treatment group (control 20% versus L-NAME 40%) in relation to the maximal response to acetylcholine (control 93% versus L-NAME 79%). L-serine evoked a rapid, reversible, dose-dependent fall in mean arterial pressure without increasing heart rate and was more pronounced in L-NAME-treated rats (maximal response: >60 mm Hg) than in the control rats (maximal response: 25 mm Hg). This was inhibited (P<0.01) by apamin+charybdotoxin pretreatment. The in vitro and in vivo data confirm that L-serine promotes vasodilatation in resistance arterioles and evokes a greater fall in mean arterial pressure in NO synthase-inhibited hypertensive rats via activation of apamin and charybdotoxin/TRAM-34-sensitive K(Ca) channels present on the endothelium.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.107.099598DOI Listing
March 2008

Inability to upregulate cytochrome P450 4A and 2C causes salt sensitivity in young Sprague-Dawley rats.

Am J Hypertens 2006 Nov;19(11):1174-80

Department of Physiology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

Background: Young Sprague-Dawley rats develop high blood pressure (BP) when exposed to a high salt intake, whereas adult ones generally do not. We investigated the role of renal cytochromes P450 4A (CYP 4A) and 2C (CYP 2C) in maintaining normal BP.

Methods: Young (age 5 weeks) and adult (age 53 weeks) Sprague-Dawley rats were given either 20 mmol sodium carbonate (vehicle for clofibrate) or 0.9% saline to drink for 3 weeks. Some young animals received the peroxisome proliferator activated receptor (PPAR)alpha agonist clofibrate (80 mg daily). We measured tail-cuff and intra-arterial BP, weight change, sodium balance, 20-hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acid (20-HETE) excretion (by high-performance liquid chromatography), and renal expression of CYP 4A and CYP 2C (by real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction).

Results: Saline-treated adult animals remained normotensive: systolic BP (SBP) 117 +/- 2 mm Hg v 117 +/- 1 mm Hg in control animals. In contrast, young rats given saline developed increased SBP: 134 +/- 2 mm Hg v 115 +/- 2 mm Hg in control animals (P < . 001). Interestingly, clofibrate lowered SBP to 102 +/- 2 mm Hg in saline-treated young rats but had no effect in control animals (114 +/- 2 mm Hg). Adult rats given saline increased renal expression of CYP 4A and 2C and excreted more 20-HETE. However, young rats given saline showed no induction, and even reduced CYP 4A and 2C, decreased urinary 20-HETE excretion, and retained sodium. Clofibrate increased renal CYP and 20-HETE excretion and prevented sodium retention.

Conclusions: The products of renal CYP4A and 2C, including 20-HETE, aid in excreting salt. Animals that are unable to increase renal 20-HETE formation do not excrete sodium and are prone to hypertension.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjhyper.2006.04.007DOI Listing
November 2006

Clofibrate acutely reverses saline-induced endothelial dysfunction: role of calcium-activated potassium channels.

Am J Hypertens 2006 Nov;19(11):1167-73

Department of Pharmacology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.

Background: Endothelium-dependent vascular relaxation is impaired in various disease states including hypertension.

Methods: We investigated whether a single bolus dose of clofibrate could rapidly reverse saline-induced endothelial dysfunction, in vivo, in salt-loaded Sprague-Dawley (S-D) rats. S-D rats, 5 weeks of age, were divided into two groups. One group served as a control (Con) and was given tap water; the other group (Sal) was given normal saline (0.9% NaCl) ad libitum for 3 weeks.

Results: Mean arterial pressure (MAP) was significantly higher (138 +/- 2 nu 112 +/- 2 mm Hg, P < .001), whereas the total plasma nitrite/nitrate levels were lower (1.7 +/- 0.3 v 2.8 +/- 0.2 micromol/L, P < .05) in Sal. At this time, endothelial function was assessed in vivo. Sal rats had decreased hypotensive responses to acetylcholine (ACh) but maintained normal responses to sodium nitroprusside. The ACh-induced hypotensive response was significantly inhibited by the nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, N(G)-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME, 100 mg kg(-1) intraperitoneally [ip]) only in Con rats. Clofibrate (Clof, 200 mg kg(-1) ip) did not change blood pressure but increased ACh-induced hypotensive responses only in Sal, an effect that was abolished by subsequent administration of apamin (Apa, 50 microg kg(-1) iv) and charybdotoxin (ChTx, 50 microg kg(-1) iv). Apa+ChTx blocked responses to ACh in Con and Sal, as expected. A single dose of clofibrate (200 mg kg(-1) ip), given subsequently to Apa+ChTx, restored responses to ACh in both the Con and Sal groups, again without affecting baseline MAP.

Conclusion: Clofibrate has an acute salutary effect on endothelium-dependent vasodilation in saline-treated rats, probably mediated through vascular calcium-activated potassium channels and independent of an antihypertensive effect.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjhyper.2006.04.005DOI Listing
November 2006

EDHF-mediated rapid restoration of hypotensive response to acetylcholine after chronic, but not acute, nitric oxide synthase inhibition in rats.

Eur J Pharmacol 2006 Sep 5;546(1-3):120-6. Epub 2006 Jul 5.

Department of Pharmacology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada.

Several in vitro studies have shown that endothelium-dependent vasodilatation is maintained by endothelium-derived hyperpolarizing factor (EDHF) or prostacyclin in vessels isolated from endothelial nitric oxide synthase knockout mice. Since this has not been addressed by in vivo studies, we sought to define the magnitude and the onset time of this compensation by recording blood pressure responses to endothelium-dependent vasodilators in rats treated acutely or chronically with the NOS inhibitor, N(omega)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME). Groups of male Sprague-Dawley rats were given plain water (control) or L-NAME (0.7 mg/ml) in drinking water for 1 day, 5 days, 3 wks or 6 wks. Dose-dependent hypotensive responses to acetylcholine, bradykinin and sodium nitroprusside were determined in anesthetized rats before and after acute intravenous infusion of either L-NAME or a combination of apamin plus charybdotoxin that would selectively inhibit EDHF. Acute L-NAME treatment increased the mean arterial pressure and inhibited acetylcholine- and bradykinin-induced fall in blood pressure in control but not in chronic L-NAME treated rats. The endothelium-dependent hypotensive responses to acetylcholine and bradykinin were restored in rats treated with L-NAME after a time period of 24 h along with increased sensitivity to sodium nitroprusside and reduced plasma nitrate+nitrite levels. While apamin+charybdotoxin pretreatment inhibited the responses to acetylcholine and bradykinin in both acute and chronic L-NAME treated groups, it was more pronounced in the latter group. In conclusion, chronic inhibition of nitric oxide synthase results in the development of a compensatory hypotensive response to acetylcholine within 24 h and this is mediated by EDHF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejphar.2006.06.072DOI Listing
September 2006

Nitric oxide synthase inhibition exaggerates the hypotensive response to ghrelin: role of calcium-activated potassium channels.

J Hypertens 2005 Apr;23(4):779-84

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, S7N 5E5 Canada.

Objective: To investigate the mechanism underlying the observation that infusion of the growth hormone secretagogue peptide, ghrelin, produces a decrease in mean arterial pressure (MAP) with no change in heart rate.

Method: The effect of a single bolus infusion of ghrelin (12 nmol/kg intravenously) on the changes in MAP and heart rate was determined in 12-week-old male anaesthetized Sprague-Dawley rats subjected to pretreatment with either the nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor, N-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME; 0.7 mg/ml by mouth for 5 days), or vehicle (control).

Results: Ghrelin produced a significant decrease in MAP at 20 min (P < 0.05) after infusion in the control group, without any change in heart rate. The MAP recovered partially over 1 h. The ghrelin-evoked decrease in MAP was much greater (P < 0.01) and was sustained for 1 h in rats subjected to NOS inhibition. Pretreatment with the cyclo-oxygenase inhibitor, indomethacin, failed to affect the responses in either group. Intravenous infusion of 50 mug/kg each of apamin and charybdotoxin (ChTX), a combination that is known to block Ca-activated K channels or the endothelium-derived hyperpolarization process, attenuated the decrease in MAP evoked by ghrelin in both control and NOS-inhibited rats. A sodium nitroprusside-induced decrease in MAP was unaffected in the presence of apamin-ChTX, but acetylcholine-evoked hypotension was significantly reduced in both groups.

Conclusion: These data suggest that the Ca-activated, K-channel-mediated, ghrelin-evoked decrease in MAP may be significant in states of endothelial dysfunction associated with reduced nitric oxide availability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/01.hjh.0000163146.20330.bcDOI Listing
April 2005
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