Infarct-remodeled Myocardium Is Receptive to Protection by Isoflurane Postconditioning: Role of Protein Kinase B/Akt Signaling

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Abstract

Background:

Postinfarct remodeled myocardium exhibits numerous structural and biochemical alterations. So far, it is unknown whether postconditioning elicited by volatile anesthetics can also provide protection in the remodeled myocardium.

Methods:

Myocardial infarct was induced in male Wistar rats by ligation of the left anterior descending coronary artery. Six weeks later, hearts were buffer-perfused and exposed to 40 min of ischemia followed by 90 min of reperfusion. Anesthetic postconditioning was induced by 15 min of 2.1 vol% isoflurane. In some experiments, LY294002 (15 μm), a phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase inhibitor, was coadministered with isoflurane. Masson’s trichrome staining, immunohistochemistry, Western blot analysis, and reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction served to confirm remodeling. In buffer-perfused hearts, functional recovery was recorded, and acute infarct size was measured using 1% triphenyltetrazolium chloride staining and lactate dehydrogenase release during reperfusion. Western blot analysis was used to determine phosphorylation of reperfusion injury salvage kinases including protein kinase B/Akt and its downstream targets after 15 min of reperfusion.

Results:

Infarct hearts exhibited typical macroscopic and molecular changes of remodeling. Isoflurane postconditioning improved functional recovery and decreased acute infarct size, as determined by triphenyltetrazolium (35 ± 5% in unprotected hearts vs. 8 ± 3% in anesthetic postconditioning; P < 0.05) and lactate dehydrogenase release. This protection was abolished by LY294002, which inhibited phosphorylation of protein kinase B/Akt and its downstream targets glycogen synthase kinase 3β, endothelial nitric oxide synthase, and p70S6 kinase.

Conclusions:

Infarct-remodeled myocardium is receptive to protection by isoflurane postconditioning via protein kinase B/Akt signaling. This is the first time to demonstrate that anesthetic postconditioning retains its marked protection in diseased myocardium.

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