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Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2001 Jan;280(1):H377-83.

Protection of cardiac myocytes via delta(1)-opioid receptors, protein kinase C, and mitochondrial K(ATP) channels.

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Cardiovascular Division, Department of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


The objective of the present study was to investigate the role of delta(1)-opioid receptors in mediating cardioprotection in isolated chick cardiac myocytes and to investigate whether protein kinase C and mitochondrial ATP-sensitive K(+) (K(ATP)) channels act downstream of the delta(1)-opioid receptor in mediating this beneficial effect. A 5-min preexposure to the selective delta(1)-opioid receptor agonist (-)-TAN-67 (1 microM) resulted in less myocyte injury during the subsequent prolonged ischemia compared with untreated myocytes. 7-Benzylidenenaltrexone, a selective delta(1)-opioid receptor antagonist, completely blocked the cardioprotective effect of (-)-TAN-67. Naltriben methanesulfonate, a selective delta(2)-opioid receptor antagonist, had only a slight inhibitory effect on (-)-TAN-67-mediated cardioprotection. Nor-binaltorphimine dihydrochloride, a kappa-opioid receptor antagonist, did not affect (-)-TAN-67-mediated cardioprotection. The protein kinase C inhibitor chelerythrine and the K(ATP) channel inhibitors glibenclamide, a nonselective K(ATP) antagonist, and 5-hydroxydecanoic acid, a mitochondrial selective K(ATP) antagonist, reversed the cardioprotective effect of (-)-TAN-67. These results suggest that the delta(1)-opioid receptor is present on cardiac myocytes and mediates a potent cardioprotective effect via protein kinase C and the mitochondrial K(ATP) channel.

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