In this Issue
February 2017; volume 312, issue 2
REVIEWS | Small Vessels-Big Problems: Novel Insights into Microvascular Mechanisms of Diseases
RESEARCH ARTICLES | Advances in Cardiovascular Geroscience
- Chymase-dependent production of angiotensin II: an old enzyme in old hearts
Aging increases angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE)-independent production of cardiac angiotensin II (Ang II), a response that is driven by chymase in an exercise-reversible manner. These findings highlight chymase, in addition to ACE, as an important therapeutic target in the treatment and prevention of Ang II-induced deterioration of cardiac function in the elderly.
- Reduced nitric oxide bioavailability mediates cerebroarterial dysfunction independent of cerebral amyloid angiopathy in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease
We show that vasorelaxation of the basilar artery, a large intracranial, extracerebral artery important for cerebral perfusion, is impaired independent of cerebral amyloid angiopathy in a transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease. Interestingly, this dysfunction is specifically endothelium related and is mediated by impaired nitric oxide–cyclic GMP bioavailability.
RESEARCH ARTICLES | Integrative Cardiovascular Physiology and Pathophysiology
- Intrauterine growth restriction influences vascular remodeling and stiffening in the weanling rat more than sex or diet
We report intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) increases vascular stiffening in both male and female rats through increased collagen content and altered elastin structure more than a high-fat diet (HFD) alone. Our study shows the importance of stiffness supporting the hypothesis that there are physiologic differences and potential windows for early intervention targeting vascular remodeling mechanisms.
- Left and right ventricular hemodynamic forces in healthy volunteers and elite athletes assessed with 4D flow magnetic resonance imaging
Biventricular hemodynamic forces were quantified for the first time in healthy controls and elite athletes (n = 39). Hemodynamic forces constitute a slingshot-like mechanism in the right ventricle, redirecting blood flow toward the pulmonary circulation. Force patterns were similar between healthy subjects and athletes, indicating potential utility as a cardiac function biomarker.
- Chronic exposure to water-pipe smoke induces cardiovascular dysfunction in mice
No data are available on the chronic cardiovascular effects of water-pipe smoke (WPS). Our findings provide experimental evidence that chronic exposure to WPS increased blood pressure, relative heart weight, troponin I, and B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) in plasma and induced hypoxemia, hypercapnia, and thrombosis. Moreover, WPS caused cardiac oxidative stress, DNA damage, and fibrosis.
- Influence of sympathetic nerve activity on aortic hemodynamics and pulse wave velocity in women
Autonomic ganglionic blockade results in significant decreases in multiple aortic pulse wave characteristics (e.g., augmented pressure) and central pulse wave velocity in older postmenopausal women but not in young premenopausal women. Certain aortic pulse wave parameters are negatively influenced by sympathetic activity to a greater extent in older postmenopausal women.
RESEARCH ARTICLE | Small Vessels-Big Problems: Novel Insights into Microvascular Mechanisms of Diseases
- Aging is associated with impaired angiogenesis, but normal microvascular network structure, in the rat mesentery
Using a multidimensional approach, we present evidence supporting that aged microvascular networks display vessel density and patterning similar to adult networks despite also being characterized by a decreased capacity to undergo angiogenesis. Thus, vessel loss is not necessarily a characteristic of aging.