Cerebral artery Alpha-1 AR subtypes: High altitude long-term acclimatization responses

Ravi Goyal, Dipali Goyal, Nina Chu, Jonathan Van Wickle, Lawrence D. Longo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


In response to hypoxia and other stress, the sympathetic (adrenergic) nervous system regulates arterial contractility and blood flow, partly through differential activities of the alpha1 (α1) - adrenergic receptor (AR) subtypes (α1A-, α1B-, and α1DAR). Thus, we tested the hypothesis that with acclimatization to long-term hypoxia (LTH), contractility of middle cerebral arteries (MCA) is regulated by changes in expression and activation of the specific α1-AR subtypes. We conducted experiments in MCA from adult normoxic sheep maintained near sea level (300 m) and those exposed to LTH (110 days at 3801 m). Following acclimatization to LTH, ovine MCA showed a 20% reduction (n = 5; P<0.05) in the maximum tension achieved by 10-5 M phenylephrine (PHE). LTH-Acclimatized cerebral arteries also demonstrated a statistically significant (P<0.05) inhibition of PHE-induced contractility in the presence of specific α1-AR subtype antagonists. Importantly, compared to normoxic vessels, there was significantly greater (P<0.05) α1B-AR subtype mRNA and protein levels in LTH acclimatized MCA. Also, our results demonstrate that extracellular regulated kinase 1 and 2 (ERK1/2)-mediated negative feedback regulation of PHE-induced contractility is modulated by α1B-AR subtype. Overall, in ovine MCA, LTH produces profound effects on α1-AR subtype expression and function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere112784
JournalPloS one
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 13 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)


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