Age-related changes in macromolecular transport across the arterial wall were investigated in 10-, 20-, and 30-mo-old WAG/Rij rats. Animals were injected with 125I- and 131I-labeled albumin, 90 and 5 min before they were killed, respectively. The transmural distribution of relative concentration of tracers in the aortic wall was obtained using en face serial sectioning technique. The apparent endothelial permeability to albumin calculated from the distribution of 5-min 131I-labeled albumin concentrations was significantly enhanced in 20- and 30-mo-old rats compared with 10-mo-old rats. The apparent distribution volume of albumin within the media, estimated as the mean medial 125I-labeled albumin concentration, was not significantly changed in 20-mo-old rats but was significantly decreased in the 30-mo-old animals. These age-related changes in the macromolecular transport suggest that the entry of plasma macromolecules in the aged arterial wall might be enhanced, whereas the efflux through the media may be impeded, possibly contributing to their trapping in the subendothelium.
- Copyright © 1993 the American Physiological Society