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Hypertension. 1998 Mar;31(3):766-70.

Chronic oral endothelin type A receptor antagonism in experimental heart failure.

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  • 1Department of Physiology, Mayo Clinic and Foundation, Rochester, Minn 55905, USA.


Endothelin-1 (ET-1) is a cardiovascular peptide that binds to two distinct receptors, ET(A) and ET(B), resulting in systemic and regional vasoconstriction, alteration in sodium excretion, mitogenesis, and release of other vasoactive peptides such as atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP). A role for ET-1 has been proposed in congestive heart failure (CHF) based on the increase in circulating ET-1 in this cardiovascular disease state. The present study determined the cardiorenal and endocrine responses to chronic selective oral ETA antagonism in experimental CHF. Two groups of conscious dogs underwent 21 days of pacing-induced CHF. These groups included a control untreated group (n = 6) and a group that received an orally active ET(A) receptor antagonist (A-127722, Abbott Pharmaceuticals, 5 mg/kg PO bid, n = 6). Each group was studied at baseline before the onset of CHF and after 14 and 21 days of CHF. Compared with the CHF control group, the ET(A) receptor antagonism group at 14 days of CHF showed lower mean arterial pressure and systemic vascular resistance. Similarly, ET(A) receptor antagonism markedly attenuated the increase in circulating ANP despite similar atrial pressures. At 21 days of CHF, ET(A) receptor antagonism lowered pulmonary artery pressure, pulmonary vascular resistance, and systemic vascular resistance in association with a higher cardiac output. Plasma ANP remained suppressed. Despite the lower mean arterial pressure and circulating ANP in the ET(A) receptor antagonist group, the absolute decrease in sodium excretion from baseline was less compared with the untreated CHF control group. The present investigation supports the conclusion that endogenous ET-1 participates in the systemic and pulmonary vasoconstriction, the elevation of ANP, and the sodium retention that characterize this model of experimental CHF, suggesting a potential therapeutic role for ET(A) receptor antagonism in CHF.

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