Endothelial nitric oxide synthase regulates microvascular hyperpermeability in vivo

Takuya Hatakeyama, Peter J. Pappas, Robert W. Hobson, Mauricio P. Boric, William C. Sessa, Walter N. Durán

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

99 Scopus citations


Nitric oxide (NO) is an important regulator of blood flow, but its role in permeability is still challenged. We tested in vivo the hypotheses that: (a) endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) is not essential for regulation of baseline permeability; (b) eNOS is essential for hyperpermeability responses in inflammation; and (c) molecular inhibition of eNOS with caveolin-1 scaffolding domain (AP-Cav) reduces eNOS-regulated hyperpermeability. We used eNOS-deficient (eNOS-/-) mice and their wild-type control as experimental animals, platelet-activating factor (PAF) at 10-7 M as the test pro-inflammatory agent, and integrated optical intensity (IOI) as an index of microvascular permeability. PAF increased permeability in wild-type cremaster muscle from a baseline of 2.4 ± 2.2 to a peak net value of 84.4 ± 2.7 units, while the corresponding values in cremaster muscle of eNOS-/- mice were 1.0 ± 0.3 and 15.6 ± 7.7 units (P < 0.05). Similarly, PAF increased IOI in the mesentery of wild-type mice but much less in the mesentery of eNOS-/- mice. PAF increased IOI to comparable values in the mesenteries of wild-type mice and those lacking the gene for inducible NOS (iNOS). Administration of AP-Cav blocked the microvascular hyperpermeability responses to 10-7 M PAF. We conclude that: (1) baseline permeability does not depend on eNOS; (2) eNOS and NO are integral elements of the signalling pathway for the hyperpermeability response to PAF; (3) iNOS does not affect either baseline permeability or hyperpermeability responses to PAF; and (4) caveolin-1 inhibits eNOS regulation of microvascular permeability in vivo. Our results establish eNOS as an important regulator of microvascular permeability in inflammation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-281
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology


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