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Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2012 Nov 15;303(10):H1229-36. doi: 10.1152/ajpheart.00379.2012. Epub 2012 Sep 14.

Preconditioning protects the heart in a prolonged uremic condition.

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Cardiovascular Research Group, Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Szeged, Szeged, Hungary.


Metabolic diseases such as hyperlipidemia and diabetes attenuate the cardioprotective effect of ischemic preconditioning. In the present study, we examined whether another metabolic disease, prolonged uremia, affects ischemia/reperfusion injury and cardioprotection by ischemic preconditioning. Uremia was induced by partial nephrectomy in male Wistar rats. The development of uremia was verified 29 wk after surgery. Transthoracic echocardiography was performed to monitor cardiac function. At week 30, hearts of nephrectomized and sham-operated rats were isolated and subjected to a 30-min coronary occlusion followed by 120 min reperfusion with or without preceding preconditioning induced by three intermittent cycles of brief ischemia and reperfusion. In nephrectomized rats, plasma uric acid, carbamide, and creatinine as well as urine protein levels were increased as compared with sham-operated controls. Systolic anterior and septal wall thicknesses were increased in nephrectomized rats, suggesting the development of a minimal cardiac hypertrophy. Ejection fraction was decreased and isovolumic relaxation time was shortened in nephrectomized rats demonstrating a mild systolic and diastolic dysfunction. Infarct size was not affected significantly by nephrectomy itself. Ischemic preconditioning significantly decreased infarct size from 24.8 ± 5.2% to 6.6 ± 1.3% in the sham-operated group and also in the uremic group from 35.4 ± 9.5% to 11.9 ± 3.1% of the area at risk. Plasma ANG II and nitrotyrosine were significantly increased in the uremic rats. We conclude that although prolonged experimental uremia leads to severe metabolic changes and the development of a mild myocardial dysfunction, the cardioprotective effect of ischemic preconditioning is still preserved.

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