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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1990 Oct 15;172(1):143-8.

L-glutamine inhibits the release of endothelium-derived relaxing factor from the rabbit aorta.

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William Harvey Research Institute, St Bartholomew's Hospital Medical College, London, United Kingdom.


The present study investigates the effect of the amino acid L-glutamine (L-Gln) on the release of endothelium-derived relaxing factor (EDRF) from the luminally perfused rabbit aorta and on endothelium-dependent relaxations of rabbit aortic strips. L-Gln (200 microM) had no effect on the acetylcholine (Ach)-induced release of EDRF from freshly prepared aortic tissues. The concentration of L-arginine (L-Arg) in endothelial cells isolated from these aortae was approximately 4 mM, as determined by HPLC analysis. After an initial equilibration period of 2 h and two consecutive infusions of Ach (55 microM for 15 min) at 2 and 3 h, L-Arg levels fell by 62 +/- 14% (n = 4). Under these conditions, L-Gln (200 microM) but not D-Gln (200 microM) inhibited the release of EDRF by 50 +/- 4% (n = 7). This effect of L-Gln was partially reversed by infusions of L-Arg (500 microM) but not D-Arg (500 microM). L-Gln (200 microM) but not D-Gln (200 microM) potentiated the inhibitory effect of N omega-nitro-L-arginine (30 microM), an inhibitor of EDRF biosynthesis, on Ach-induced relaxations of rabbit aortic strips, whereas L-Gln alone had no effect. Thus, L-Gln inhibits the release of EDRF from intact blood vessels presumably by interfering with the generation of L-Arg by the endothelium.

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