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J Cardiovasc Pharmacol Ther. 1999 Jul;4(3):151-158.

The Effect of Agmatine on Ischemic and Nonischemic Isolated Rat Heart.

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Cardiovascular Research Laboratory, Sourasky Tel-Aviv Medical Center, Tel-Aviv, Israel



the natural polyamines play a protective role during ischemic injury. We studied the effects of agmatine on ischemic and nonischemic isolated rat hearts.


Thirty-one rats were randomly assigned to one of four experimental groups. Sixteen rats were injected with saline (group 1, n = 9; group 3, n = 7), and 15 rats were injected with 100 mg/kg of agmatine (group 2, n = 8; group 4, n = 7). Injections were given twice: 24 hours and 1 hour before the experiment. Using the modified Langendorf model, rat hearts were perfused with Krebs-Henseleit solution for 105 minutes during phase 1 of the experiment (groups 1 and 2). During phase 2, hearts were exposed to 45 minutes of global ischemia (groups 3 and 4).


During phase 1, no statistically significant differences were observed between the agmatine and the control groups. During phase 2, agmatine caused a significant increase in left ventricular pressure (P <.003). At the end of reperfusion, P(max) was 111% +/- 10% from the baseline levels versus only 82% +/- 5% in the control group. After 20 minutes of reperfusion, dP/dt (first-time derivative of the ventricular pressure) in the agmatine group reached full recovery of 106% +/- 12% versus only 64% +/- 14% in the saline group (P =.059). Agmatine also caused a significant increase in coronary flow rate (P <.004) throughout the reperfusion period. Quantitative immunohistochemical staining disclosed reduced cell damage in the agmatine-treated hearts (P <.02) versus the control group.


Agmatine injection given before induced ischemia improves hemodynamic recovery by mechanisms that may be attributed to its vasodilatory properties.


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