Effect of ivabradine, a funny current inhibitor, on portal hypertensive rats

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Background:Ivabradine is a funny current inhibitor which is administered to patients with congestive heart failure to reduce their heart rate (HR) and attenuate oxidative stress. Chronic liver diseases are characterized by portal hypertension and hyperdynamic circulation with tachycardia. The present study aimed to investigate the effect of ivabradine on portal hypertension.Methods:Male Sprague–Dawley rats received partial portal vein ligation (PVL) to induce portal hypertension. The PVL rats were randomly allocated to receive either vehicle or ivabradine treatment for 10 days. Then the hemodynamic data were collected. The levels of oxidative stress markers and the mRNA expression of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) were measured in the collateral vessel, the superior mesentery artery and the liver. In addition, the collateral vascular responsiveness to arginine vasopressin (AVP) was examined in the ivabradine-treated and vehicle-treated PVL rats.Results:Treatment with ivabradine significantly lowered the HR (174 ± 20 vs. 374 ± 9 beats/min; p < 0.001) and the superior mesentery arterial flow (SMAf) (6.6 ± 0.3 vs. 9.1 ± 0.7 mL/min/100 g BW; p = 0.005) of the PVL rats compared with the control group. The mean arterial pressure, cardiac index, systemic vascular resistance, portal pressure and serum levels of oxidative stress markers were not significantly affected by ivabradine treatment. In addition, the NOS expression and collateral vascular responsiveness to AVP were not significantly influenced by ivabradine treatment, either.Conclusion:Ivabradine reduced the HR and SMAf in PVL rats, which alleviated the hyperdynamic circulatory state and splanchnic hyperemia of portal hypertension. However, whether these effects would help alleviate portal hypertension-related complications requires further clinical investigations.

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