Sleep Disorders: Sleep Disorders III |

Muscularization of Pulmonary Artery and RhoA/ROCK levels in Rats Exposed to Intermittent Hypoxia FREE TO VIEW

Caili Li; Jing Feng
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Tianjin Medical University General Hospital, Tianjin, China

Copyright 2016, American College of Chest Physicians. All Rights Reserved.

Chest. 2016;149(4_S):A587. doi:10.1016/j.chest.2016.02.612
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SESSION TITLE: Sleep Disorders III

SESSION TYPE: Original Investigation Poster

PRESENTED ON: Saturday, April 16, 2016 at 11:45 AM - 12:45 PM

PURPOSE: Intermittent hypoxia (IH), as the most important pathophysiologic characteristic of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and a recognized risk factor for cardiovascular disorders, may lead to proliferation of smooth muscle cells (SMCs) and then pulmonary arterial remodeling through the RhoA/ROCK signaling pathway. In this preliminary study, an IH animal model was developed, and the muscularization of small pulmonary arteries and RhoA/ROCK levels in these rats exposed to IH were studied.

METHODS: Model rats were exposed to IH [cycles of hypoxia (30s of 5% O2) and normoxia (90s of 21% O2)] or intermittent normoxia [cycles of normoxia (30s of 21% O2) and normoxia (90s of 21% O2)] for 4 weeks, 9 AM to 5 PM in every day. Immunohistochemistry of α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) were used to measure muscularization and status of cell proliferation in small pulmonary arteries. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and Western blot analyses were used to assess levels of RhoA and ROCK expression.

RESULTS: A significantly increased ratio of α-SMA positive muscularized vessels and higher proliferative rate were observed in IH group compared with Control group (P < 0.05). Levels of RhoA/ROCK mRNA and protein in IH group were significantly higher than those in Control group (P < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS: Our preliminary data implicated that IH may induce proliferation of SMCs and then pulmonary arterial remodeling through the RhoA/ROCK signaling pathway, which may involve the development of PH.

CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Evidence strongly suggests that RhoA/ROCK is an attractive target for the development of therapeutics to treat PH as studies have shown that RhoA/ROCK signaling pathway is involved in the sustained vasoconstriction, vascular remodeling, and PH finally.

DISCLOSURE: The following authors have nothing to disclose: Caili Li, Jing Feng

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