Objective: Pancreatic renin-angiotensin system has been implied to play a role in the regulation of pancreatic functions and could be a new therapeutic target in acute pancreatitis. The aim of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic potential of angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibition by captopril and angiotensin II type 1 receptor inhibition by L-158809 and losartan experimentally in acute pancreatitis.
Design: Rats were randomly divided into 15 groups. Acute edematous pancreatitis was induced by injection of cerulein 20microg/kg SC four times at hourly intervals. Severe necrotizing pancreatitis was induced by retrograde injection of 3% taurocholate into the biliary-pancreatic duct.
Interventions: Captopril, L-158809 and losartan were given intraperitoneally. Main outcome features: pancreatic pathology, pancreatic myeloperoxidase activity and serum amylase activity were assessed.
Results: Captopril decreased serum amylase (10,809+/-1867 vs. 4085+/-1028U/L, p<0.01), myeloperoxidase activity (3.5+/-0.5 vs. 1.5+/-0.1, p<0.05) and histopathological score (5.0+/-0.4 vs. 1.1+/-0.5, p<0.01) in acute edematous pancreatitis. In taurocholate induced severe necrotizing pancreatitis captopril ameliorated histopathological score (10.1+/-1.2 vs. 3.4+/-0.5, p<0.01), pancreatic parenchymal necrosis (4.5+/-0.6 vs. 0.0+/-0.0, p<0.001), fatty necrosis (2.8+/-0.9 vs. 0.1+/-0.1, p<0.01) and edema (2.1+/-0.3 vs. 1.4+/-0.3, p<0.05). However, L-158809 did not have similar beneficial effects on acute pancreatitis in rats while losartan decreased pancreatic parenchymal necrosis and neutrophil infiltration.
Conclusions: This study not only demonstrated the differential effects of captopril, losartan and L-158809 in acute pancreatitis but also showed that there is still much to investigate about pancreatic renin-angiotensin system. Inhibition of angiotensin-converting enzyme should be evaluated carefully as a potential new therapeutic target in acute pancreatitis.