Adenosine Concentrations in the Interstitium of Resting and Contracting Human Skeletal Muscle


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Abstract

BackgroundAdenosine has been proposed to be a locally produced regulator of blood flow in skeletal muscle. However, the fundamental questions of to what extent adenosine is formed in skeletal muscle tissue of humans, whether it is present in the interstitium, and where it exerts its vasodilatory effect remain unanswered.Methods and Results-The interstitial adenosine concentration was determined in the vastus lateralis muscle of healthy humans via dialysis probes inserted in the muscle. The probes were perfused with buffer, and the dialysate samples were collected at rest and during graded knee extensor exercise. At rest, the interstitial concentration of adenosine was 220 +/- 100 nmol/L and femoral arterial blood flow (FaBF) was 0.19 +/- 0.02 L/min. When the subjects exercised lightly, at a work rate of 10 W, there was a markedly higher (1140 +/- 540 nmol/L; P<0.05) interstitial adenosine concentration and a higher FaBF (2.22 +/- 0.18 L/min; P<0.05) compared with at rest. When exercise was performed at 20, 30, 40, or 50 W, the concentration of adenosine was moderately greater for each increment, as was the level of leg blood flow. The interstitial concentrations of ATP, ADP, and AMP increased from rest (0.13 +/- 0.03, 0.07 +/- 0.03, and 0.07 +/- 0.02 [micro sign]mol/L, respectively) to exercise (10 W; 2.00 +/- 1.32, 2.08 +/- 1.23, and 1.65 +/- 0.50 [micro sign]mol/L, respectively; P<0.05).ConclusionsThe present study provides, for the first time, interstitial adenosine concentrations in human skeletal muscle and demonstrates that adenosine and its precursors increase in the exercising muscle interstitium, at a rate associated with intensity of muscle contraction and the magnitude of muscle blood flow. (Circulation. 1998;98:6-8.)

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