Augmented receptor-mediated Ca2+ mobilization causes supersensitivity of contractile response to serotonin in atherosclerotic arteries.
We have previously reported that atherosclerotic arteries obtained from Watanabe heritable hyperlipidemic (WHHL) rabbits exhibit a marked increase of contractile response to serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]) and ergonovine and that these augmented contractile responses to specific agonists may play an important role in the pathogenesis of vasospasm. In the present study, we investigated whether supersensitivity to 5-HT in atherlosclerotic arteries was due to an increase in 5-HT receptor-mediated Ca2+ mobilization or to an increase in Ca2+ sensitivity of the contractile elements. We measured simultaneously both isometric tension and [Ca2+]i in fura 2-loaded aortic smooth muscle strips from control and WHHL rabbits. Muscle tension in the high K+ (72.7 mmol/L)-stimulated states and [Ca2+]i in both resting and high K(+)-stimulated states did not differ between control and WHHL rabbits. In atherosclerotic aortas from WHHL rabbits, the dose-response curves of both tension and [Ca2+]i for 5-HT were shifted to the left at lower threshold concentrations and one-half maximally effective dose. The maximum response of contraction produced by 5-HT in WHHL rabbits was augmented compared with that in control rabbits (123 +/- 17% versus 33 +/- 7% of the 72.7 mmol/L K(+)-induced contraction, P < .001). The maximum response of [Ca2+]i produced by 5-HT was also augmented in WHHL rabbits compared with control rabbits (29 +/- 4% versus 10 +/- 0.9% of the 72.7 mmol/L K(+)-induced [Ca2+]i, P < .001). In contrast, the responses of contraction and [Ca2+]i to phenylephrine were similar between control and WHHL rabbits.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
- Copyright © 1994 by American Heart Association