Altered nitric oxide synthase 3 distribution in mesenteric arteries of hypertensive rats

Jennifer C. Sullivan, David M. Pollock, Jennifer S. Pollock

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A high-salt (HS) diet and angiotensin II (Ang II) are both associated with the development of hypertension and impaired endothelial function. We hypothesize that alterations in nitric oxide synthase (NOS) activity or subcellular localization of NOS 3 protein may contribute to endothelial dysfunction in salt-dependent hypertension. To test this hypothesis, two models of salt-dependent hypertension were studied: DOCA-salt and Ang II. For Ang II hypertension, rats were divided into 4 groups: control on normal or HS diet, Ang II-infused on normal or HS diet. The mesenteric arterial bed was isolated and frozen in liquid nitrogen. Frozen arteries were homogenized and separated into cytosolic and particulate fractions. NOS activity was assayed by determining the conversion of 3H-arginine to 3H-citrulline in the absence and presence of the NOS inhibitor, Nω-nitro-L-arginine. NOS 3 protein expression was significantly increased in the cytosol of arteries from DOCA-salt compared with placebo rats and in Ang II-infused and Ang HS rats compared with control. NOS 3 expression in the particulate fraction was comparable among all groups. NOS activity (pmol/30 min/total protein) was significantly increased in the cytosolic fraction of arteries from DOCA-salt rats compared with placebo and in Ang HS rats compared with control. NOS activity was comparable in the particulate fraction in all rat groups. In conclusion, there is an altered subcellular distribution of NOS 3 in salt-dependent hypertension that may contribute to the development of hypertension and endothelial dysfunction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)597-602
Number of pages6
Issue number2 II
Publication statusPublished - Mar 4 2002



  • Angiotensin II
  • Arginine
  • Deoxycorticosterone
  • Hypertension, arterial
  • Mesenteric arteries
  • Nitric oxide synthase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine

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