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      Determination of Aortic Elastic Modulus by Pulse Wave Velocity and Wall Tracking in a Rat Model of Aortic Stiffness


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          Several methods have been used to evaluate the elastic modulus of the aortic wall in the rat, but these have never been compared when used simultaneously. We measured thoracoabdominal pulse wave velocity (PWV) and changes in thoracic aorta diameter during the cardiac cycle (with wall echo-tracking) in pentobarbital-anesthetized adult male Wistar rats; half of the group had previously received vitamin D<sub>3</sub> plus nicotine (VDN) in order to increase the stiffness of the aortic wall. The Moens-Korteweg elastic modulus (E<sub>MK</sub>) was calculated from PWV and the ratio of the internal diameter to the medial thickness determined by histomorphometry following in situ pressurized fixation. The incremental elastic modulus (E<sub>inc</sub>) was calculated from the distensibility coefficient and end-diastolic diameter measured by wall echo-tracking and the medial thickness determined by histomorphometry. Both values were higher in VDN rats than in controls: E<sub>inc</sub> 8.9 ± 0.5 and 5.7 ± 0.4·10<sup>6</sup> dyne/cm<sup>2</sup>, p < 0.05; E<sub>MK</sub> 7.6 ± 0.5 and 4.1 ± 0.5·10<sup>6</sup> dyne/cm<sup>2</sup>, p < 0.05. E<sub>inc</sub> was greater than E<sub>MK</sub> and this was partially due to the fact that the in vivo end-diastolic diameter measured by ultrasound was greater than the mean aortic diameter measured ex vivo by histomorphometry. In conclusion, different methods for the measurement of the elastic properties of the aortic wall gave similar results in controls and in a rat model of aortic stiffness.

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          Pulse pressure, arterial stiffness, and cardiovascular risk.

           Banaz Safar (2000)
          Systolic and diastolic blood pressures are the exclusive mechanical factors usually considered as predictors of cardiovascular risk in populations of normotensive and hypertensive subjects at large. However, if hypertension is considered as a mechanical factor acting on the arterial wall with substantial deleterious consequences, the totality of the blood pressure curve should be considered in order to investigate the cardiovascular risk. The purpose of this review is to show that in addition to systolic and diastolic blood pressures, other hemodynamic indices that have particular relevance for cardiac complications and that originate from pulsatile pressure should be taken into account, with important consequences in cardiovascular epidemiology and in the pathophysiology of hypertensive end-organ damage.

            Author and article information

            J Vasc Res
            Journal of Vascular Research
            S. Karger AG
            December 2001
            07 December 2001
            : 38
            : 6
            : 546-550
            aLaboratoire de Pharmacologie Cardiovasculaire, EA3116, Faculté de Pharmacie, Université Henri Poincaré-Nancy 1, Nancy, France; bDepartment of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Cardiovascular Research Institute Maastricht, University of Maastricht, The Netherlands
            51090 J Vasc Res 2001;38:546–550
            © 2001 S. Karger AG, Basel

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            Page count
            Tables: 2, References: 22, Pages: 5
            Research Paper


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