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Resveratrol and Small Artery Compliance and Remodeling in the Spontaneously Hypertensive Rat.

Behbahani, J., Thandapilly, S.J., Louis, X.L., Huang, Y., Shao, Z., Kopilas, M.A., Wojciechowski, P., Netticadan, T., and Anderson, H.D. (2010). "Resveratrol and Small Artery Compliance and Remodeling in the Spontaneously Hypertensive Rat.", American Journal of Hypertension, 23(12), pp. 1273-1278. doi : 10.1038/ajh.2010.161  Access to full text


Background: Small arteries from the spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) exhibit abnormal stiffness and geometry. This study investigated the effects of resveratrol, a polyphenol found in foods such as red grapes, on small arteries in SHR. Methods: Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats and SHR were treated with resveratrol (2.5 mg/kg/day) for 10 weeks. Mesenteric small artery segments (third-order branches) were mounted in a pressure myograph, and vascular geometry and mechanical properties were calculated from lumen and media dimensions measured at incremental intraluminal pressures. Systolic blood pressure was measured by tail-cuff plethysmography. Results: Increased compliance and reduced wall component stiffness were observed in SHR arteries vs. WKY arteries. Though resveratrol did not prevent lowering of wall component stiffness, it did attenuate, at least in part, the increased compliance of SHR arteries. In contrast, resveratrol increased compliance and reduced wall component stiffness in WKY arteries. SHR arteries exhibited remodeling that consisted of narrowed lumens, thickened media widths, and augmented media-to-lumen ratios. Resveratrol partially attenuated the remodeling process and also abolished exaggerated ERK signaling and expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (a marker of proliferation) in SHR arteries. The latter effects might be related to the ability of resveratrol to alleviate oxidative stress in SHR and enhance protein kinase G (PKG) activity. Elevated blood pressure in 20-week-old SHR was unaffected by resveratrol. Conclusions: The ability of resveratrol to limit the increase in compliance of SHR arteries is likely related to inhibitory effects on remodeling and pro-growth ERK signaling rather than blood pressure or arterial wall component stiffness.

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