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J Biol Chem. 1999 Jun 11;274(24):16694-700.

Targeted disruption of the beta2 adrenergic receptor gene.

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  • 1Department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, USA.


beta-Adrenergic receptors (beta-ARs) are members of the superfamily of G-protein-coupled receptors that mediate the effects of catecholamines in the sympathetic nervous system. Three distinct beta-AR subtypes have been identified (beta1-AR, beta2-AR, and beta3-AR). In order to define further the role of the different beta-AR subtypes, we have used gene targeting to inactivate selectively the beta2-AR gene in mice. Based on intercrosses of heterozygous knockout (beta2-AR +/-) mice, there is no prenatal lethality associated with this mutation. Adult knockout mice (beta2-AR -/-) appear grossly normal and are fertile. Their resting heart rate and blood pressure are normal, and they have a normal chronotropic response to the beta-AR agonist isoproterenol. The hypotensive response to isoproterenol, however, is significantly blunted compared with wild type mice. Despite this defect in vasodilation, beta2-AR -/- mice can still exercise normally and actually have a greater total exercise capacity than wild type mice. At comparable workloads, beta2-AR -/- mice had a lower respiratory exchange ratio than wild type mice suggesting a difference in energy metabolism. beta2-AR -/- mice become hypertensive during exercise and exhibit a greater hypertensive response to epinephrine compared with wild type mice. In summary, the primary physiologic consequences of the beta2-AR gene disruption are observed only during the stress of exercise and are the result of alterations in both vascular tone and energy metabolism.

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