Effects of aging and exercise training on the mechanisms of Angiotensin II-induced vasoconstriction in rat skeletal muscle arterioles
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Aging is associated with increases in regional and systemic vascular resistance and impaired ability to increase blood flow to active muscles during exercise. Aging enhances vasoconstrictor responsiveness in both humans and animals, and an increase in Angiotensin II-induced vasoconstriction is one possible mechanism for old age-associated increase in muscle vascular resistance. The purpose of this study was to determine 1) whether aging alters Ang II-induced vasoconstriction, 2) whether exercise training attenuates the age-associated alteration in Ang II-mediated vasoconstriction, and 3) the mechanism(s) through which aging and exercise training alter Ang II-induced vasoconstriction in rat skeletal muscle arterioles. Male Fischer 344 rats were assigned to 4 groups: Young sedentary (YS; 4 months), old sedentary (OS; 24 months), young trained (YT) and old trained (OT). Exercise-trained groups performed treadmill exercises for 60 min/day at 15 m/min, on a 15º incline for 5 days/week for 10-12 weeks. First-order (1A) arterioles were isolated from soleus and gastrocnemius muscles for in vitro experimentation. Intraluminal diameter changes were determined in response to the cumulative addition of Ang II (3×10-11 - 3×10-5 M). Ang II dose responses were then determined following the removal of endothelium and treatment with NG-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME, 10-5 M), a nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor. Ang II-induced vasoconstriction was augmented in the aged skeletal muscle arterioles, both in soleus and gastrocnemius muscles, and age-associated increases in Ang II-induced vasoconstriction were abolished with the removal of endothelium and with L-NAME. Exercise training ameliorated the age-induced increase in Ang II-vasoconstriction, and this alteration was eliminated by the removal of endothelium and with NOS inhibition. These findings suggest that aging enhances Ang II-induced vasoconstrictor responses in the arterioles from both soleus, high oxidative, and white portion of gastrocnemius, low oxidative glycolytic muscles, and this age-associated change occurs through an endothelium-dependent NOS signaling pathway. These results also demonstrated that exercise training can ameliorate the age-associated increase in Ang II vasoconstriction in the arterioles from both high oxidative and low oxidative glycolytic muscles through an endothelium-mediated NOS mechanism.
Park, Yoonjung (2006). Effects of aging and exercise training on the mechanisms of Angiotensin II-induced vasoconstriction in rat skeletal muscle arterioles. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from