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Hypertension. 2003 Dec;42(6):1164-70. Epub 2003 Oct 27.

Ac-SDKP reverses cardiac fibrosis in rats with renovascular hypertension.

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  • 1Hypertension and Vascular Research Division, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, Mich 48202-2689, USA.

Abstract

N-acetyl-seryl-aspartyl-lysyl-proline (Ac-SDKP) is a natural substrate for the N-terminal active site of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE). We previously reported that Ac-SDKP prevented cardiac fibrosis in rats with renovascular or aldosterone-salt hypertension. However, it is not clear whether Ac-SDKP reverses cardiac fibrosis in hypertension, nor the mechanism(s) involved. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that Ac-SDKP reversal of hypertension-induced cardiac fibrosis involves a decrease in transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) and/or connective tissue growth factor (CTGF). In 2-kidney, 1-clip (2K-1C) hypertensive rats, Ac-SDKP at 400 or 800 microg/kg per day SC was started 8 weeks after hypertension and cardiac fibrosis were established and was continued for 8 weeks. Left ventricular (LV) collagen in rats with 2K-1C plus vehicle at 8 and 16 weeks after clipping was similar but higher than in the sham group (P<0.05). Ac-SDKP at 400 and 800 microg/kg per day, which increased plasma Ac-SDKP 2- and 5-fold, respectively, reversed the increase in LV collagen in a dose-dependent manner. The mechanism by which Ac-SDKP reverses LV fibrosis does not appear to depend on ACE inhibition by Ac-SDKP, since we found that Ac-SDKP at various doses did not affect blood pressure responses to exogenous angiotensin I or bradykinin. However, Ac-SDKP reversed the increase in LV TGF-beta and CTGF compared with rats with 2K-1C plus vehicle (P<0.005). We concluded that in hypertension, Ac-SDKP reverses cardiac fibrosis, perhaps due in part to a decrease in TGF-beta and CTGF in the heart.

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