Navigation Links
Better understanding of blood vessel constrictor needed to harness its power for patients
Date:9/18/2008

To harness endothelin-1's power to constrict blood vessels and help patients manage high blood pressure or heart failure, scientists must learn more about how endothelin functions naturally and in disease states, says a Medical College of Georgia researcher.

Despite strong laboratory evidence that blocking endothelin-1 receptors would be an effective, targeted therapy for these two major health problems, the drugs failed patients, says Dr. Adviye Ergul, physiologist in the MCG Schools of Medicine and Graduate Studies.

"These endothelin-1 receptors are logical targets for drugs to treat hypertension because of their key role in vasoconstriction, but the targets are moving and we don't know how one target plays off another," says Dr. Ergul, who discussed novel aspects of endothelin receptor interaction during the 62nd High Blood Pressure Research Conference and Workshop in Atlanta.

"The current thinking in pharmacology is one hormone, one receptor equals boom: the effect. I think cells are much smarter," she says. This week, Dr. Ergul challenged colleagues across the country to consider emerging evidence that usual receptor communication is likely more complex than they thought and that disease may significantly alter communication.

Endothelin-1 receptors are known to interact: one way blood vessels keep a healthy tone, for example, is that a and b receptors on smooth muscle cells prompt constriction while b receptors on the lining of blood vessels work with nitric oxide to promote relaxation. Endothelin-1 receptors on the kidneys are a player as well, helping wring out excess water and salt. "There is a delicate balance," says Dr. Ergul.

But there's apparently more to the relationships. She holds up a handful of recent journal articles which reflect mounting evidence that receptors actively work as teams of two or more. That teamwork could change their function. New technology enables scientists to literally watch receptors move closer together on a cell surface, clearly indicating that something is going on.

"Numerous drugs have been developed that are antagonists that can block these receptors with the idea they can be used in hypertension and heart failure. In animal models, they worked well," she says. But in clinical trials they failed badly; a drug for heart failure actually worsened problems such as labored breathing and swelling in patients already having difficulty moving blood through their body.

The first antagonists blocked both known receptors: a and b; the next generation blocked one or the other but still didn't work. A notable exception is endothelin-1 antagonists that reduce excessive pressure and tissue buildup inside the blood vessels of patients with pulmonary hypertension. In addition to constricting blood vessels, endothelin-1 can help blood vessels grow bigger but too much can result in protein deposits that stiffen blood vessel walls.

Scientists have been scratching their heads over why blocking these receptors hasn't panned out; they've even looked for an "atypical" receptor that might explain it. But Dr. Ergul, an expert on endothelin-1's role in diabetes, believes the unexpected results are better explained by poorly understood relationships in normal and disease states. "How receptors dimerize, how they get closer together on the cell surface, likely needs to affect our drug design," she says.


'/>"/>

Contact: Toni Baker
tbaker@mcg.edu
706-721-4421
Medical College of Georgia
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. New caledonian crows find 2 tools better than 1
2. Restoring sight, advances in fertility treatments and better visibility for pilots at FIO
3. New CPR promises better results by compressing abdomen, not Chest
4. City birds better than rural species in coping with human disruption
5. Doctors learn to control their own brains pain responses to better treat patients
6. Study reveals that immigrant teenagers eat better than Spanish teenagers
7. New membrane strips carbon dioxide from natural gas faster and better
8. New approach builds better proteins inside a computer
9. People who skip meals: are they better off?
10. Researchers successfully simulate photosynthesis and design a better leaf
11. Human safety, prosperity depend on better ocean observing system: Scientists
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Better understanding of blood vessel constrictor needed to harness its power for patients
(Date:3/9/2016)... NEW YORK , March 9, 2016 ... current and future states of the RNA Sequencing (RNA ... in segments such as instruments, tools and reagents, data ... Analyze various segments of the RNA-Sequencing market such ... RNA-Sequencing services Identify the main factors affecting each segment ...
(Date:3/9/2016)... , March 9, 2016  Crossmatch ® , ... enrollment solutions, today announced the addition of smart ... Altus multi-factor authentication platform. New contextual and ... to step-up security where it,s needed most — ... Washington, DC . --> ...
(Date:3/3/2016)... 2016  FlexTech, a SEMI Strategic Association Partner, awarded ... & Development, Leadership in Education, and, in a category ... th year of the FLEXI Awards and the ... from past years . Judging was done on ... of criteria, by a panel of non-affiliated, independent, industry ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/29/2016)... Denver, CO (PRWEB) , ... April 29, 2016 ... ... on addressing the necessary fundamentals to transform technology into a viable company, CereScan’s ... enable growth. Mr. Kelley, a recognized leader and mentor in the Denver ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... , April 29, 2016 ... the latest update to its industry-leading treatment planning software, ... that Monaco version 5.11 provides ... now attain calculation speeds up to four times faster ... . With the industry,s gold standard Monte ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... April 28, 2016 , ... Connecticut Innovations ... companies, today announced the launch of VentureClash , a $5 million global ... , “VentureClash looks to attract the best early-stage companies here in Connecticut, around ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... April 28, 2016 , ... ... an open house for regional manufacturers at its Maple Grove, Minnesota technical center, ... Hardinge Group, Chiron and Trumpf. Almost 20 leading suppliers of tooling, accessories, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: