Preconditioning potential of purmorphamine: a hedgehog activator against ischaemic reperfusion injury in ovariectomised rat heart

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The present study was been designed to investigate the role and pharmacological potential of hedgehog in oestrogen-deficient rat heart.


Oestrogen deficiency was produced in female Wistar rats by the surgical removal of both ovaries and these animals were used four weeks later. Isolated rat heart was subjected to 30 min ischaemia followed by 120 min of reperfusion (I/R). The heart was subjected to pharmacological preconditioning with the hedgehog agonist purmorphamine (1μM) and GDC-0449, a hedgehog antagonist, in the last episode of reperfusion before I/R. Myocardial infarction was assessed in terms of the increase in lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), creatinine kinase-MB (CK-MB), myeloperoxidase (MPO) level and infarct size (triphenyltetrazolium chloride staining). Immunohistochemistry analysis was done for the assessment of tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α level in cardiac tissue. eNOS expression was estimated by rt-PCR.


Pharmacological preconditioning with purmorphamine significantly attenuated I/R-induced myocardial infarction, TNF-α, MPO level and release of LDH and CK-MB compared to the I/R control group. However, GDC-0449 prevented the ameliorative preconditioning effect of estradiol.


It may be concluded that the hedgehog agonist purmorphamine prevents the ovariectomised heart from ischaemic reperfusion injury.

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