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See detailLigand-dependent activation of ER{beta} lowers blood pressure and attenuates cardiac hypertrophy in ovariectomized spontaneously hypertensive rats.
Jazbutyte, Virginija; Arias-Loza, Paula Anahi; Hu, Kai et al

in Cardiovascular research (2008), 77(4), 774-81

AIMS: The biological effects of oestrogens are mediated by two different oestrogen receptor (ER) subtypes, ERalpha and ERbeta, which might play different, redundant, or opposing roles in cardiovascular ... [more ▼]

AIMS: The biological effects of oestrogens are mediated by two different oestrogen receptor (ER) subtypes, ERalpha and ERbeta, which might play different, redundant, or opposing roles in cardiovascular disease. Previously, we have shown that the selective ERalpha agonist 16alpha-LE2 improves vascular relaxation, attenuates cardiac hypertrophy, and increases cardiac output without lowering elevated blood pressure in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). Because ERbeta-deficient mice exhibit elevated blood pressure and since the ERbeta agonist 8beta-VE2 attenuated hypertension in aldosterone-salt-treated rats, we have now tested the hypothesis that the isotype-selective ERbeta agonist 8beta-VE2 might be capable of lowering elevated blood pressure in ovariectomized SHR. METHODS AND RESULTS: Treatment of ovariectomized SHR with 8beta-VE2 for 12 weeks conferred no uterotrophic effects but lowered elevated systolic blood pressure (-38 +/- 5 mmHg, n = 31, P < 0.001 vs. placebo) as well as peripheral vascular resistance (-31.3 +/- 4.6%, P < 0.001 vs. placebo). 8beta-VE2 enhanced aortic ERbeta expression (+75.7 +/- 7.1%, P < 0.01 vs. placebo), improved NO-dependent vasorelaxation, augmented phosphorylation of the vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein in isolated aortic rings (P < 0.05 vs. placebo), increased cardiac output (+20.4 +/- 2.5%, P < 0.01 vs. placebo), and attenuated cardiac hypertrophy (-22.2 +/- 3.2%, p < 0.01 vs. placebo). 8beta-VE2, in contrast to oestradiol, did not enhance cardiac alpha-myosin heavy chain expression. CONCLUSION: Ligand-dependent activation of ERbeta confers blood pressure lowering effects in SHR that are superior to those of 17beta-estradiol or the ERalpha agonist 16alpha-LE2 and attenuates cardiac hypertrophy primarily by a reduction of cardiac afterload without promoting uterine growth. [less ▲]

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See detailConditional neuronal nitric oxide synthase overexpression impairs myocardial contractility.
Burkard, Natalie; Rokita, Adam G.; Kaufmann, Susann G. et al

in Circulation Research (2007), 100(3), 32-44

The role of the neuronal NO synthase (nNOS or NOS1) enzyme in the control of cardiac function still remains unclear. Results from nNOS(-/-) mice or from pharmacological inhibition of nNOS are ... [more ▼]

The role of the neuronal NO synthase (nNOS or NOS1) enzyme in the control of cardiac function still remains unclear. Results from nNOS(-/-) mice or from pharmacological inhibition of nNOS are contradictory and do not pay tribute to the fact that probably spatial confinement of the nNOS enzyme is of major importance. We hypothesize that the close proximity of nNOS and certain effector molecules like L-type Ca(2+)-channels has an impact on myocardial contractility. To test this, we generated a new transgenic mouse model allowing conditional, myocardial specific nNOS overexpression. Western blot analysis of transgenic nNOS overexpression showed a 6-fold increase in nNOS protein expression compared with noninduced littermates (n=12; P<0.01). Measuring of total NOS activity by conversion of [(3)H]-l-arginine to [(3)H]-l-citrulline showed a 30% increase in nNOS overexpressing mice (n=18; P<0.05). After a 2 week induction, nNOS overexpression mice showed reduced myocardial contractility. In vivo examinations of the nNOS overexpressing mice revealed a 17+/-3% decrease of +dp/dt(max) compared with noninduced mice (P<0.05). Likewise, ejection fraction was reduced significantly (42% versus 65%; n=15; P<0.05). Interestingly, coimmunoprecipitation experiments indicated interaction of nNOS with SR Ca(2+)ATPase and additionally with L-type Ca(2+)- channels in nNOS overexpressing animals. Accordingly, in adult isolated cardiac myocytes, I(Ca,L) density was significantly decreased in the nNOS overexpressing cells. Intracellular Ca(2+)-transients and fractional shortening in cardiomyocytes were also clearly impaired in nNOS overexpressing mice versus noninduced littermates. In conclusion, conditional myocardial specific overexpression of nNOS in a transgenic animal model reduced myocardial contractility. We suggest that nNOS might suppress the function of L-type Ca(2+)-channels and in turn reduces Ca(2+)-transients which accounts for the negative inotropic effect. [less ▲]

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See detailBoth estrogen receptor subtypes, alpha and beta, attenuate cardiovascular remodeling in aldosterone salt-treated rats.
Arias-Loza, Paula-Anahi; Hu, Kai; Dienesch, Charlotte et al

in Hypertension (2007), 50(2), 432-8

Experimental and population-based studies indicate that female gender and estrogens protect the cardiovascular system against aldosterone-induced injury. Understanding the function of estrogens in heart ... [more ▼]

Experimental and population-based studies indicate that female gender and estrogens protect the cardiovascular system against aldosterone-induced injury. Understanding the function of estrogens in heart disease requires more precise information on the role of both estrogen receptor (ER) subtypes, ERalpha and ERbeta. Therefore, we determined whether selective activation of ERalpha or of ERbeta would confer redundant, specific, or opposing effects on cardiovascular remodeling in aldosterone salt-treated rats. The ERalpha agonist 16alpha-LE2, the ERbeta agonist 8beta-VE2, and the nonselective estrogen receptor agonist 17beta-estradiol lowered elevated blood pressure, cardiac mass, and cardiac myocyte cross-sectional areas, as well as increased perivascular collagen accumulation and vascular osteopontin expression in ovariectomized rats receiving chronic aldosterone infusion plus a high-salt diet for 8 weeks. Uterus atrophy was prevented by 16alpha-LE2 and 17beta-estradiol but not by 8beta-VE2. Cardiac proteome analyses by 2D gel electrophoresis, mass spectrometry, and peptide sequencing identified specific subsets of proteins involved in cardiac contractility, energy metabolism, cellular stress response and extracellular matrix formation that were regulated in opposite directions by aldosterone salt treatment and by different estrogen receptor agonists. We conclude that activation of either ERalpha or ERbeta protects the cardiovascular system against the detrimental effects of aldosterone salt treatment and confers redundant, as well as specific, effects on cardiac protein expression. Nonfeminizing ERbeta agonists such as 8beta-VE2 have a therapeutic potential in the treatment of hypertensive heart disease. [less ▲]

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See detailMedroxyprogesterone acetate but not drospirenone ablates the protective function of 17 beta-estradiol in aldosterone salt-treated rats.
Arias-Loza, Paula Anahi; Hu, Kai; Schafer, Andreas et al

in Hypertension (2006), 48(5), 994-1001

Controversial results obtained from human and animal studies on the prevention of heart disease by estrogens and progestins warrant a better understanding of nuclear hormone receptor function and ... [more ▼]

Controversial results obtained from human and animal studies on the prevention of heart disease by estrogens and progestins warrant a better understanding of nuclear hormone receptor function and interaction. To address this issue and taking into account that effects of synthetic progestins are not only referable to action through the progesterone receptor but may also be mediated by other steroid receptors, we characterized cardiovascular function and inflammatory gene expression in aldosterone salt-treated rats on long-term administration of 17beta-estradiol, medroxyprogesterone acetate, and drospirenone, a new progestogen exhibiting antimineralocorticoid activity. The complex pattern of cardiovascular injury in ovariectomized Wistar rats induced by chronic aldosterone infusion plus a high-salt diet was significantly attenuated in sham-ovariectomized rats and by coadministration of 17beta-estradiol in ovariectomized animals after 8 weeks of continuous treatment. The beneficial role of 17beta-estradiol on blood pressure, cardiac hypertrophy, vascular osteopontin expression, perivascular fibrosis, and impaired NO-dependent relaxation of isolated aortic rings was completely abrogated by coadministration of medroxyprogesterone acetate. In contrast, drospirenone was either neutral or additive to 17beta-estradiol in protecting against aldosterone salt-induced cardiovascular injury and inflammation. The current results support the hypothesis of complex interactions among estrogen, progesterone, glucocorticoid, androgen, and mineralocorticoid receptor signaling in cardiovascular injury and inflammation. Novel progestins, such as drospirenone, confer superior effects compared with medroxyprogesterone acetate in a model of aldosterone-induced heart disease because of its antimineralocorticoid properties. [less ▲]

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See detailAging reduces the efficacy of estrogen substitution to attenuate cardiac hypertrophy in female spontaneously hypertensive rats.
Jazbutyte, Virginija; Hu, Kai; Kruchten, Patricia et al

in Hypertension (2006), 48(4), 579-86

Clinical trials failed to show a beneficial effect of postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy, whereas experimental studies in young animals reported a protective function of estrogen replacement in ... [more ▼]

Clinical trials failed to show a beneficial effect of postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy, whereas experimental studies in young animals reported a protective function of estrogen replacement in cardiovascular disease. Because these diverging results could in part be explained by aging effects, we compared the efficacy of estrogen substitution to modulate cardiac hypertrophy and cardiac gene expression among young (age 3 months) and senescent (age 24 months) spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRs), which were sham operated or ovariectomized and injected with placebo or identical doses of 17beta-estradiol (E2; 2 microg/kg body weight per day) for 6 weeks (n=10/group). Blood pressure was comparable among sham-operated senescent and young SHRs and not altered by ovariectomy or E2 treatment among young or among senescent rats. Estrogen substitution inhibited uterus atrophy and gain of body weight in young and senescent ovariectomized SHRs, but cardiac hypertrophy was attenuated only in young rats. Cardiac estrogen receptor-alpha expression was lower in intact and in ovariectomized senescent compared with young SHRs and increased with estradiol substitution in aged rats. Plasma estradiol and estrone levels were lower not only in sham-operated but surprisingly also in E2-substituted senescent SHRs and associated with a reduction of hepatic 17beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 enzyme activity, which converts weak (ie, estrone) into potent estrogens, such as E2. Aging attenuates the antihypertrophic effect of estradiol in female SHRs and is associated with profound alterations in cardiac estrogen receptor-alpha expression and estradiol metabolism. These observations contribute to explain the lower efficiency of estrogen substitution in senescent SHRs. [less ▲]

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See detailThe estrogen receptor-alpha agonist 16alpha-LE2 inhibits cardiac hypertrophy and improves hemodynamic function in estrogen-deficient spontaneously hypertensive rats.
Pelzer, Theo; Jazbutyte, Virginija; Hu, Kai et al

in Cardiovascular research (2005), 67(4), 604-12

OBJECTIVE: Cardiac mass increases with age and with declining estradiol serum levels in postmenopausal women. Although the non-selective estrogen receptor-alpha and -beta agonist 17beta-estradiol ... [more ▼]

OBJECTIVE: Cardiac mass increases with age and with declining estradiol serum levels in postmenopausal women. Although the non-selective estrogen receptor-alpha and -beta agonist 17beta-estradiol attenuates cardiac hypertrophy in animal models and in observational studies, it remains unknown whether activation of a specific estrogen receptor subtype (ERalpha or ERbeta) might give similar or divergent results. Therefore, we analyzed myocardial hypertrophy as well as cardiac function and gene expression in ovariectomized, spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) treated with the subtype-selective ERalpha agonist 16alpha-LE2 or 17beta-estradiol. METHODS AND RESULTS: Long-term administration of 16alpha-LE2 or 17beta-estradiol did not affect elevated blood pressure, but both agonists efficiently attenuated cardiac hypertrophy and increased cardiac output, left ventricular stroke volume, papillary muscle strip contractility, and cardiac alpha-myosin heavy chain expression. The observed effects of E2 and 16alpha-LE2 were abrogated by the ER antagonist ZM-182780. Improved left ventricular function upon 16alpha-LE2 treatment was also observed in cardiac MRI studies. In contrast to estradiol and 16alpha-LE2, tamoxifen inhibited cardiac hypertrophy but failed to increase alpha-myosin heavy chain expression and cardiac output. CONCLUSIONS: These results support the hypothesis that activation of ERalpha favorably affects cardiac hypertrophy, myocardial contractility, and gene expression in ovariectomized SHR. Further studies are required to determine whether activation ERbeta mediates redundant or divergent effects. [less ▲]

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See detailIncreased mortality and aggravation of heart failure in estrogen receptor-beta knockout mice after myocardial infarction.
Pelzer, Theo; Loza, Paula-Anahi Arias; Hu, Kai et al

in Circulation (2005), 111(12), 1492-8

BACKGROUND: Lower mortality rates among women with chronic heart failure than among men may depend in part on the action of female sex hormones, especially estrogens. The biological effects of estrogens ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Lower mortality rates among women with chronic heart failure than among men may depend in part on the action of female sex hormones, especially estrogens. The biological effects of estrogens are mediated by 2 distinct estrogen receptor (ER) subtypes (ERalpha and ERbeta). The present study was undertaken to determine the role of ERbeta in the development of chronic heart failure after experimental myocardial infarction (MI). METHODS AND RESULTS: Female ERbeta null mice (BERKO(Chapel Hill)) and wild-type littermates (WT) were ovariectomized, given 17beta-estradiol, and subjected to chronic anterior MI (MI; BERKO n=31, WT n=30) or sham operation (sham; BERKO n=14, WT n=14). At 8 weeks after MI, both genotypes revealed left ventricular remodeling and impaired contractile function at similar average infarct size (BERKO-MI 32.9+/-5% versus WT-MI 33.0+/-4%); however, BERKO mice showed increased mortality (BERKO-MI 42% versus WT-MI 23%), increased body weight and fluid retention (P<0.01), higher ventricular pro-ANP expression (BERKO-MI 27.9-fold versus sham, WT-MI 5.2-fold versus sham; BERKO-MI versus WT-MI P<0.001), higher atrial natriuretic peptide serum levels, and increased phospholamban expression (P<0.05) compared with WT mice. CONCLUSIONS: Systemic deletion of ERbeta in female mice increases mortality, aggravates clinical and biochemical markers of heart failure, and contributes to impaired expression of Ca(2+)-handling proteins in chronic heart failure after MI. Further studies are required to delineate the relative importance of cardiac and vascular effects of ERbeta and the role of ERalpha in the development of heart failure. [less ▲]

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See detailRegulation of vascular tone in animals overexpressing the sarcolemmal calcium pump.
Schuh, Kai; Quaschning, Thomas; Knauer, Sebastian et al

in The Journal of biological chemistry (2003), 278(42), 41246-52

The mechanisms governing vascular smooth muscle tone are incompletely understood. In particular, the role of the sarcolemmal calcium pump PMCA (plasma membrane calmodulin-dependent calcium ATPase), which ... [more ▼]

The mechanisms governing vascular smooth muscle tone are incompletely understood. In particular, the role of the sarcolemmal calcium pump PMCA (plasma membrane calmodulin-dependent calcium ATPase), which extrudes Ca2+ from the cytosol, and its importance compared with the sodium/calcium exchanger remain speculative. To test whether the PMCA is a regulator of vascular tone, we generated transgenic mice overexpressing the human PMCA4b under control of the arterial smooth muscle-specific SM22alpha promoter. This resulted in an elevated systolic blood pressure compared with littermate controls. In PMCA-overexpressing mice, endothelium-dependent relaxation of norepinephrine-preconstricted aortic rings to acetylcholine did not differ from wild type controls (76 +/- 8% versus 79 +/- 8% of maximum relaxation; n = 12, n.s.). De-endothelialized aortas of transgenic mice exhibited stronger maximum contraction to KCl (100 mmol/liter) compared with controls (86 +/- 6% versus 68 +/- 7% of reference KCl contraction at the beginning of the experiment; p <0.05). Preincubation of de-endothelialized vessels with the nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor l-NAME (l-N(G)-nitroarginine methyl ester) (10-5 mol/liter) resulted in a stronger contraction to KCl (p <0.05 versus without l-NAME), thus unmasking vasodilatory effects of inherent NO production. Maximum contraction to KCl after preincubation with l-NAME did not differ between PMCA mice and controls. In analogy to the results in PMCA-overexpressing mice, contractions of de-endothelialized aortas of neuronal NOS-deficient mice to KCl were significantly increased compared with controls (151 +/- 5% versus 131 +/- 6% of reference KCl contraction; p <0.05). In conclusion, our data suggest a model in which the sarcolemmal Ca2+ pump down-regulates activity of the vascular smooth muscle Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent neuronal NOS by a functionally relevant interaction. Therefore, the PMCA represents a novel regulator of vascular tone. [less ▲]

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See detailImprovement of endothelial dysfunction by selective estrogen receptor-alpha stimulation in ovariectomized SHR.
Widder, Julian; Pelzer, Theo; von Poser-Klein, Christine et al

in Hypertension (2003), 42(5), 991-6

Both known estrogen receptors, ERalpha and ERbeta, are expressed in blood vessels. To gain further insight into the role of ERalpha in a functional setting, we investigated the effect of the novel highly ... [more ▼]

Both known estrogen receptors, ERalpha and ERbeta, are expressed in blood vessels. To gain further insight into the role of ERalpha in a functional setting, we investigated the effect of the novel highly selective ERalpha agonist Cpd1471 on vascular reactivity in ovariectomized spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). After ovariectomy or sham operation, 12-week-old female SHR received either 17beta-estradiol (E2, 2 microg/kg body wt per day), the selective ERalpha agonist Cpd1471 (30 microg/kg body wt per day), or placebo. Acetylcholine-induced endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation was significantly blunted in aortas from ovariectomized rats (Rmax, 53%+/-3% versus sham, 79%+/-2%; P<0.001). Treatment with E2 or Cpd1471 significantly augmented acetylcholine-induced relaxation in ovariectomized rats (Rmax, 70%+/-2%; resp, 73%+/-2%). Endothelium-independent relaxation induced by sodium nitroprusside was not different among the four groups. The contractile response induced by the nitric oxide (NO) synthase inhibitor Nomega-nitro-l-arginine, an index of basal NO formation, was significantly lower in ovariectomized rats compared with sham-operated animals (53+/-2% versus 77%+/-5%; P<0.01) and was normalized by both E2 (70%+/-2%) and Cpd1471 (70%+/-3%). Aortic endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) expression and phosphorylation of the vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein, an index of NO/cGMP-signaling, was reduced in ovariectomized SHR and normalized by E2 and Cpd1471. In SHR after ovariectomy, endothelium-dependent NO-mediated vasorelaxation and eNOS expression are attenuated. The novel selective ERalpha agonist Cpd1471 prevented these pathophysiological changes to a similar extent as E2. Thus, the pharmacological principle of selective ERalpha activation mediates positive vascular effects. [less ▲]

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