Influence of changes of endogenous nitric oxide and carbon monoxide on atherosclerotic process in rabbits

Xu-Shaoping; Li-Luguang; Tang-Chaoshu

Zhonghua Xinxueguanbing Zazhi 29(3): 181-183


ISSN/ISBN: 0253-3758
Accession: 010837863

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Objective: To investigate the changes of endogenous nitric oxide (NO) and carbon monoxide (CO) in atherosclerosis induced by high cholesterol diet in rabbits and influence of NO and CO on the atherosclerotic process. Methods: The rabbits received 1% cholesterol diet (Chol group, n=7) or 1% cholesterol diet plus L-arginine (2.25% in drinking water, Arg group) or heme-L-lysinate (9 mgcntdotkg-1cntdotd-1, ip., Heme group, n=9). After 10 weeks, blood sample were abstracted from ear central artery for biochemical assay, aorta were harvested for assessment of NO and CO production, NO synthases (cNOS) and heme oxygenase (HO) activities. Results: High cholesterol diet did not alter plasma L-arginine concentration, but serum total cholesterol (TC), plasma asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) and ox-LDL concentrations increased markedly (all P<0.01). Compared with contrast group, n=7, aortic NO and CO production, cNOS and HO activity decreased markedly (all P<0.01), the aortic plaques area was (42.6+-9.2)% in Chol group. Compared with Chol group, exogenous L-arginine increased plasma L-arginine concentration, elevated aortic cNOS activity and NO production (all P<0.01), the aortic plaques area was (19.5+-7.4)% (P<0.05); exogenous heme-L-lysinate restored aortic CO production (P<0.01), the aortic plaques area was (28.4+-8.1)% (P<0.05). Both L-arginine and heme-L-lysinate did not decrease serum TC, plasma ADMA and ox-LDL concentrations. Conclusion: Aortic NOS/NO and HO/CO system are impaired significantly in atherosclerotic rabbits induced by high cholesterol diet. Decreases of endogenous NO and CO production are associated with atherosclerotic progression. Both L-arginine and heme-L-lysinate inhibit atherosclerotic progression by increasing NO or CO production.