Effects of exercise training on cellular mechanisms of endothelial nitric oxide synthase regulation in coronary arteries after chronic occlusion

Minglong Zhou, R. Jay Widmer, Wei Xie, A. Jimmy Widmer, Matthew W. Miller, Friedhelm Schroeder, Janet L. Parker, Cristine L. Heaps

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Exercise training enhances agonist-mediated relaxation in both control and collateral-dependent coronary arteries of hearts subjected to chronic occlusion, an enhancement that is mediated in part by nitric oxide. The purpose of the present study was to elucidate exercise training-induced adaptations in specific cellular mechanisms involved in the regulation of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) in coronary arteries of ischemic hearts. Ameroid constrictors were surgically placed around the proximal left circumflex coronary artery (LCX) of adult female Yucatan miniature swine. Eight weeks postoperatively, animals were randomized into sedentary (pen-confined) or exercise training (treadmill run; 5 days/ wk; 14 wk) protocols. Coronary artery segments (∼1.0 mm luminal diameter) were isolated from collateral-dependent (LCX) and control (nonoccluded left anterior descending) arteries 22 wk after ameroid placement. Endothelial cells were enzymatically dissociated, and intracellular Ca 2+ responses (fura 2) to bradykinin stimulation were studied. Immunofluorescence and laser scanning confocal microscopy were used to quantify endothelial cell eNOS and caveolin-1 cellular distribution under basal and bradykinin-stimulated conditions. Immunoblot analysis was used to determine eNOS, phosphorylated (p)-eNOS, protein kinase B (Akt), pAkt, and caveolin-1 protein levels. Bradykinin-stimulated nitrite plus nitrate (NOx; nitric oxide metabolites) levels were assessed via HPLC. Exercise training resulted in significantly enhanced bradykinin-mediated increases in endothelial Ca 2+ levels, NOx levels, and the distribution of eNOS-to-caveolin-1 ratio at the plasma membrane in endothelial cells of control and collateral-dependent arteries. Exercise training also significantly increased total eNOS and phosphorylated levels of eNOS (pSer1179) in collateral-dependent arteries. Total eNOS protein levels were also significantly increased in collateral-dependent arteries of sedentary animals. These data provide new insights into exercise traininginduced adaptations in cellular mechanisms of nitric oxide regulation in collateral-dependent coronary arteries of chronically occluded hearts that contribute to enhanced nitric oxide production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H1857-H1869
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Coronary artery disease
  • Coronary circulation
  • Nitrate
  • Nitrite
  • Porcine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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