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Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2011 Mar;300(3):H762-8. doi: 10.1152/ajpheart.00880.2010. Epub 2010 Dec 10.

Terutroban, a thromboxane/prostaglandin endoperoxide receptor antagonist, prevents hypertensive vascular hypertrophy and fibrosis.

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1Department of Pharmacological Sciences, University of Milan, Milan, Italy.


Thromboxane A(2) and other eicosanoids such as isoprostanes contribute to vascular proliferation and atherosclerosis by binding to the thromboxane/prostaglandin endoperoxide receptors. The effects of terutroban, a thromboxane/prostaglandin endoperoxide receptor antagonist, on aorta remodeling were evaluated in spontaneously hypertensive stroke-prone rats (SHRSPs), a model of severe hypertension, endothelial dysfunction, vascular inflammation, and cerebrovascular diseases. Male SHRSPs were allocated to three groups receiving a standard diet (n = 5) or a high-sodium permissive diet plus vehicle (n = 6) or plus terutroban (30 mg · kg(-1) · day(-1); n = 6). After 6 wk of dietary treatment, all of the animals were injected with bromodeoxyuridine and simultaneously euthanized for aorta collection. The aortic media thickness-to-lumen ratio significantly (P < 0.0001) increased in the salt-loaded rats compared with the rats fed a standard diet, whereas terutroban treatment completely prevented media thickening (P < 0.001). When compared with vehicle, terutroban was also effective in preventing cell proliferation in the media, as indicated by the reduced number of bromodeoxyuridine-positive (P < 0.0001) and proliferating cell nuclear antigen-positive cells (P < 0.0001). Severe fibrosis characterized by a significant accumulation of collagen and fibronectin in the vascular wall was observed in the vehicle-treated rats (P < 0.01) but was completely prevented by terutroban (P < 0.001). The latter also inhibited heat shock protein-47 (P < 0.01) and TGF-1β expression (P < 0.001), which were significantly increased by the high-salt diet. In conclusion, terutroban prevents the development of aorta hyperplasia and has beneficial effects on fibrotic processes by affecting TGF-β and heat shock protein-47 expression in SHRSPs. These findings provide mechanistic data supporting the beneficial effects of terutroban in preventing or retarding atherogenesis.

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