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

Endotoxin-induced hypotension in rats is not mediated by prekallikrein activation.

To test whether endotoxin decreases blood pressure acutely in rats by activating the plasma kinin-forming system, plasma kallikrein activity was determined in different experimental settings of endotoxemia. Conscious normotensive rats were infused for 45 min with endotoxin (LPS E. coli 0111:B4) at a dose (0.01 mg/min) which had no effect on blood pressure. Additional rats were infused with the vehicle of endotoxin. Plasma prekallikrein activity was measured at the end of the 45 min infusions. In other rats, a bolus intravenous injection of endotoxin (2 mg) was administered following the 45 min infusion of endotoxin or its vehicle. In these two latter groups of rats, plasma prekallikrein activity was determined 15 min after administration of the bolus dose of endotoxin. In rats pretreated with the endotoxin infusion, the bolus dose of endotoxin had no significant effect on blood pressure, whereas rats infused with the vehicle became and remained hypotensive up to the end of the experiment. There was however no significant difference in plasma prekallikrein activity within the different groups of rats. In another group of rats, dextran sulfate (0.25 mg i.v.), which activates factor XII and thereby the conversion of prekallikrein to kallikrein, induced a short-lasting fall in blood pressure. 15 min after administration of dextran sulfate, plasma prekallikrein activity was almost completely suppressed. These results obtained in unanesthetized rats strongly suggest that the blood pressure fall induced by E. coli endotoxin is not due to activation of prekallikrein and consequently of the kinin-forming system.[1]


  1. Endotoxin-induced hypotension in rats is not mediated by prekallikrein activation. Kaufmann, U., Schapira, M., Waeber, B., Nussberger, J., Brunner, H.R. Circ. Shock (1987) [Pubmed]
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