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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Hypertension and endothelial dysfunction in apolipoprotein E knockout mice.

Mice lacking ApoE (Apoe(-/-)) develop initially hypercholesterolemia and lastly atherosclerosis. This study examined hemodynamics and endothelial function in 6-week-old Apoe(-/-) mice with hypercholesterolemia only, 7.5-months-old Apoe(-/-) mice with both hypercholesterolemia and atherosclerosis, and age matched controls. One day after implantation of catheters into the carotid artery, arterial pressure was measured in conscious, unrestrained mice. Compared with the respective controls, there was a significant increase in arterial pressure and the ratio of left ventricular weight to body weight in 7.5-month-old Apoe(-/-) mice but not in 6-week-old Apoe(-/-) mice. Histopathological analysis demonstrated significant renal artery disease in the form of extensive atheromatous plaques only in 7.5-month-old Apoe(-/-) mice, whereas no atherosclerotic lesions were found in 6-week-old Apoe(-/-) mice. For evaluation of endothelial function, a laser Doppler perfusion imager with a computer-controlled optical scanner was used to measure cutaneous blood perfusion on the dorsal side of one hind paw before and after topical application of mustard oil, which is known to induce nitric oxide-mediated vasodilation. The mustard oil treatment elicited a substantial increase in blood perfusion (P<0.01), which was similar between 6-week-old Apoe(-/-) mice and controls but significantly blunted in 7.5-month-old Apoe(-/-) mice versus control mice, suggesting nitric oxide-mediated vasodilation is diminished in 7.5-month-old Apoe(-/-) mice but not in 6-week-old Apoe(-/-) mice. In contrast, the increase in blood perfusion induced by topical administration of cilostazol, which induces vasodilation via cyclic adenosine monophosphate, was not different between 7.5-month-old Apoe(-/-) mice and controls. Thus hypertension and endothelial dysfunction observed in 7.5-month-old Apoe(-/-) mice may be due mainly to atherosclerosis.[1]


  1. Hypertension and endothelial dysfunction in apolipoprotein E knockout mice. Yang, R., Powell-Braxton, L., Ogaoawara, A.K., Dybdal, N., Bunting, S., Ohneda, O., Jin, H. Arterioscler. Thromb. Vasc. Biol. (1999) [Pubmed]
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