Treatment with salvianolic acid B restores endothelial function in angiotensin II-induced hypertensive mice
Salvianolic acid B (Sal B) is one of the most abundant phenolic acids derived from the root of Danshen with potent anti-oxidative properties. The present study examined the vasoprotective effect of Sal B in hypertensive mice induced by angiotensin II (Ang II). Sal B (25 mg/kg/day) was administered via oral gavage for 11 days to Ang II (1.2 mg/kg/day)-infused C57BL/6J mice (8–10 weeks old). The vascular reactivity (both endothelium-dependent relaxations and contractions) in mouse arteries was examined by wire myography. The production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), protein level and localization of angiotensin AT1 receptors and the proteins involved in ROS formation were evaluated using dihydroethidium (DHE) fluorescence, lucigenin-enhanced chemiluminescence, immunohistochemistry and Western blotting, respectively. The changes of ROS generating proteins were also assessed in vitro in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) exposed to Ang II with and without co-treatment with Sal B (0.1–10 nM). Oral administration of Sal B reversed the Ang II-induced elevation of arterial systolic blood pressure in mice, augmented the impaired endothelium-dependent relaxations and attenuated the exaggerated endothelium-dependent contractions in both aortas and renal arteries of Ang II-infused mice. In addition, Sal B treatment normalized the elevated levels of AT1 receptors, NADPH oxidase subunits (NOx-2 and NOx-4) and nitrotyrosine in arteries of Ang II-infused mice or in Ang II-treated HUVECs. In summary, the present study provided additional evidence demonstrating that Sal B treatment for 11 days reverses the impaired endothelial function and with a marked inhibition of AT1 receptor-dependent vascular oxidative stress. This vasoprotective and anti-oxidative action of Sal B most likely contributes to the anti-hypertensive action of the plant-derived compound.