Enhanced vascular reactivity of small mesenteric arteries from diabetic mice is associated with enhanced oxidative stress and cyclooxygenase products

Br J Pharmacol. 2005 Apr;144(7):953-60. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjp.0706121.


Vascular reactivity to the alpha-adrenoceptor agonist phenylephrine (PE) was enhanced in small mesenteric arteries (SMA) from diabetic (db/db) mice under both high and low in vitro oxygen conditions. Mechanical removal of the endothelium significantly attenuated the enhanced vascular reactivity of SMA from db/db mice. Acute incubation of the SMA with sepiapterin, a precursor of tetrahydrobiopterin, and N(omega)-nitro L-arginine (L-NA), an inhibitor of nitric oxide (NO) synthase (NOS), resulted in no significant change in the enhanced vascular reactivity to PE in db/db mice. Endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) mRNA and protein levels in SMA were not different between db/+ and db/db mice. Acute incubation of SMA with a combination of polyethylene glycol superoxide dismutase and catalase significantly reduced the enhanced contraction to PE in db/db mice. There were higher levels of malondialdehyde, a marker of lipid peroxidation and basal superoxide as measured by dihydroethidium staining, in SMA from db/db mice compared to db/+ mice. Acute incubation with indomethacin, a nonselective inhibitor of cyclooxygenase, SQ 29548, a selective thromboxane receptor antagonist and furegrelate, a thromboxane synthesis inhibitor, significantly attenuated the enhanced contraction to PE in SMA from db/db mice. This study demonstrates that the enhanced contractility of SMA from db/db mice to PE was endothelium dependent and involves elevated reactive oxygen species, cyclooxygenase activity and thromboxane synthesis, but not changes in the eNOS/NO pathway.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Diabetes Mellitus / genetics
  • Diabetes Mellitus / metabolism*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Mesenteric Arteries / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Oxidative Stress / physiology*
  • Phenylephrine / pharmacology
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases / biosynthesis*
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases / genetics
  • Vasoconstriction / drug effects
  • Vasoconstriction / physiology*


  • Phenylephrine
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases