Vascular β-adrenergic receptor adenylyl cyclase system in maturation and aging

Mohamed A. Gaballa, Andrea D. Eckhart, Walter J. Koch, Steven Goldman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to determine how maturation and aging affects beta (β)-adrenergic receptor (AR) control of arterial vasorelaxation. Left ventricular (LV) hemodynamics and arterial vasorelaxation in thoracic artery segments were studied in Brown Norway, Fisher 344 cross rats at 6 weeks, 6 months, and 23 months of age. We defined changes in maturation as occurring between 6 weeks and 6 months of age and changes in aging as occurring between 6 months and 23 months of age. With maturation, isoproterenol resulted in a downward shift in heart rate and an upward shift in both LV dP/dt and peripheral vascular resistance responses. Similar changes were noted with aging except for the downward shift in LV dP/dt isoproterenol response. There was a dose-dependent increase in arterial vasorelaxation in response to isoproterenol in all age groups, but the 6-week-old animals had a 5-fold (P<0.01) increase in vasorelaxation compared to other age groups. The isoproterenol-induced arterial vasorelaxation response was not altered by removal of the endothelium. The vasodilatory responses to nitroglycerin, acetylcholine, and adenosine were diminished (P<0.05) with aging. The vasorelaxation responses to forskolin and IBMX were unchanged with maturation and diminished with aging. Incubation of arterial rings in cholera toxin resulted in a reduction in relaxation only in arteries from 6-week-old rats. Maturation resulted in no change in β-AR density [20.2 ± 0.7 v 18.5 ± 0.5 fmol/mg protein, P = N.S. 6 weeks (n = 2, 18 aortas were combined v 6-month-old rats)]. With maturation, there was no change in Gα(i) level. However, βARK1 levels were increased (55.4 ± 2.1 v 40.8 ± 0.4, arbitrary densitometry units) and Gα(s) levels were decreased (29.5 ± 0.8 v 49.9 ± 1.9, arbitrary densitometry units). Aging resulted in no change in β-AR density (15.3 ± 1.7 v 18.5 ± 0.5 fmol/mg membrane protein), but decreases in basal, isoproterenol-, naF-, and forskolin-stimulated AC activities. Compared to 6 week data, 23-month-old rats exhibited no change in either Gα(i), or βARK1, however, Gα(s) was decreased. In summary, β-AR-stimulated arterial vasorelaxation is depressed during maturation and aging. Since there is no change in β-AR density but a decrease in Gα(s) and in basal/stimulated AC activities, the defect in β-AR signaling during maturation and aging is probably a post receptor defect, i.e. possibly in the receptor-G protein coupling. (C) 2000 Academic Press.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1745-1755
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2000


  • Adenylate cyclase
  • Aging
  • Artery
  • G-protein
  • Vasorelaxation
  • β-Adrenergic receptors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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