We studied the effect of l-arginine on relaxation responses to sodium nitroprusside or SIN-1 (3-morpholinosydonimine-N-ethyl-carbamine) in the rat thoracic aorta incubated with endotoxin. Sodium nitroprusside or SIN-1 produced a reproducible relaxation in the aorta incubated for 12 h with endotoxin. However, the response to both nitrovasodilators was remarkably attenuated when the aorta was preincubated for 12 h with endotoxin and l-arginine. d-Arginine could not substitute for l-arginine. The attenuated response to sodium nitroprusside or SIN-1 was partially restored by the inhibition of nitric oxide (NO) production with Nω-nitro-l-arginine. Cycloheximide prevented the inhibitory effect of preincubation with l-arginine. These results suggest that the prolonged exposure to muscle-derived NO induces hyporesponsiveness to nitrovasodilators. © 1995.
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