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

Differences in prostaglandin metabolism in cultured aortic and pulmonary arterial endothelial cells exposed to acute and chronic hypoxia.

In vivo, a marked difference in blood oxygen tension exists between the pulmonary artery and the aorta. Responses of vascular endothelial cells from these vessels to changes in ambient oxygen might be influenced by the oxygen tension to which they are continuously exposed in vivo or by their anatomic site. To explore this hypothesis, we initially studied the production of the cyclooxygenase metabolites prostacyclin and thromboxane in bovine aortic and main pulmonary arterial endothelial cells grown in 21% O2 and exposed to different degrees of acute hypoxia over a wide range of times. We found that short-term hypoxia (3% or 0% O2) rapidly and transiently activates the cyclooxygenase pathway in both cell types, with a more rapid response in bovine aortic endothelial cells. To determine whether culture in an oxygen tension similar to that to which main pulmonary arterial endothelial cells are exposed in vivo alters this response, we evaluated these cyclooxygenase metabolites in bovine aortic and main pulmonary arterial endothelial cells cultured long-term in 3% O2, both at baseline and after exposure to acute anoxia (0% O2). In both cell types, we found a decrease in prostacyclin and thromboxane synthesis at baseline and evidence of an increase in the Vmax of thromboxane synthetase following stimulation with exogenous arachidonic acid. In chronically hypoxic cells exposed to acute anoxia, there were marked differences in enzyme activity compared with that in endothelial cells maintained in 21% O2 with differences depending on the origin of the endothelial cells. In bovine aortic endothelial cells, production of neither cyclooxygenase metabolite increased; in bovine main pulmonary arterial endothelial cells, only thromboxane production increased, suggesting isolated activation of the cyclooxygenase-thromboxane synthetase pathway. These studies demonstrate that acute and chronic hypoxia have profound effects on endothelial cell cyclooxygenase metabolism and that these effects depend on the duration and degree of the hypoxic exposure and the vascular bed from which the endothelial cells are derived.[1]


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