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      Mechanoreception by the Endothelium: Mediators and Mechanisms of Pressure- and Flow-Induced Vascular Responses

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          Abstract

          Mechanoreception, a widely distributed sensory modality, has been shown to be present in certain blood vessels. Changes in physical forces, like sudden increase of transmural pressure or flow velocity (shear stress), trigger changes in blood vessel diameter; the former reduces it while the latter increases vessel caliber. These changes in diameter, which are the result of contraction and relaxation of vascular smooth muscle in the blood vessel media, can serve the purpose of physiological regulation of blood flow (autoregulation) and protection of the intima against damages from high shear forces. The precise location of mechanosensor(s) and the mechanism of mechanoreception and signal transduction are poorly understood. Accumulating evidence suggests that the endothelium may be a site of mechanoreception and that changes in the synthesis/release of endothelium-derived relaxing (EDRF, EDHF, PGI<sub>2</sub>) and contracting factors (EDCF) result in altered vascular smooth muscle tone and vessel caliber. Increased shear stress stimulates the release of EDRF and PGI2 probably via activation of a K<sup>+</sup> channel (inward rectifier) in endothelial cell membrane. Endothelium-dependent vascular contraction evoked by increased transmural pressure may be the result of (1) reduced release of EDRF (canine carotid artery) and (2) stimulation of the release of a still unidentified EDCF(s) (feline cerebral artery). Thus the endothelium can serve as pressure and flow sensor and is capable of transducing changes in mechanical forces into changes of vascular smooth muscle tone by modulating the release of endothelium-derived vasoactive factors. The physiological importance of the mechanoreception by endothelial cells in the intact circulation remains to be determined.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          JVR
          J Vasc Res
          10.1159/issn.1018-1172
          Journal of Vascular Research
          S. Karger AG
          978-3-8055-5330-8
          978-3-318-01614-7
          1018-1172
          1423-0135
          1990
          1990
          23 September 2008
          : 27
          : 2-5
          : 246-257
          Affiliations
          aDepartment of Pharmacology, Berlex Laboratories, Cedar Knolls, N.J.; bDepartment of Pharmacology, University of Miami, Fla., and cDepartment of Physiology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisc., USA
          Article
          158816 Blood Vessels 1990;27:246–257
          10.1159/000158816
          © 1990 S. Karger AG, Basel

          Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

          Page count
          Pages: 12
          Categories
          Mechanisms of Vasodilatation

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