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Title: Aldosterone induces fibrosis, oxidative stress and DNA damage in livers of male rats independent of blood pressure changes

Mineralocorticoid receptor blockers show antifibrotic potential in hepatic fibrosis. The mechanism of this protective effect is not known yet, although reactive oxygen species seem to play an important role. Here, we investigated the effects of elevated levels of aldosterone (Ald), the primary ligand of the mineralocorticoid receptor, on livers of rats in a hyperaldosteronism model: aldosterone-induced hypertension. Male Sprague–Dawley rats were treated for 4 weeks with aldosterone. To distinguish if damage caused in the liver depended on increased blood pressure or on increased Ald levels, the mineralocorticoid receptor antagonist spironolactone was given in a subtherapeutic dose, not normalizing blood pressure. To investigate the impact of oxidative stress, the antioxidant tempol was administered. Aldosterone induced fibrosis, detected histopathologically, and by expression analysis of the fibrosis marker, α-smooth muscle actin. Further, the mRNA amount of the profibrotic cytokine TGF-β was increased significantly. Fibrosis could be reduced by scavenging reactive oxygen species, and also by blocking the mineralocorticoid receptor. Furthermore, aldosterone treatment caused oxidative stress and DNA double strand breaks in livers, as well as the elevation of DNA repair activity. An increase of the transcription factor Nrf2, the main regulator of the antioxidative response could be observed, and of its target genesmore » heme oxygenase-1 and γ-glutamylcysteine synthetase. All these effects of aldosterone were prevented by spironolactone and tempol. Already after 4 weeks of treatment, aldosteroneinfusion induced fibrosis in the liver. This effect was independent of elevated blood pressure. DNA damage caused by aldosterone might contribute to fibrosis progression when aldosterone is chronically increased. - Highlights: • Aldosterone has direct profibrotic effects on the liver independent of blood pressure. • Fibrosis is mediated by the mineralocorticoid receptor and oxidative stress. • Aldosterone induces transcription factor Nrf2 and Nrf2-regulated genes in the liver. • DNA damage caused by aldosterone might contribute to fibrosis progression.« less
Authors:
; ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1]
  1. Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Würzburg, Würzburg (Germany)
  2. Division of Hepatology, Department of Medicine II, University Hospital Würzburg, Würzburg (Germany)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22439887
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology; Journal Volume: 280; Journal Issue: 3; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2014 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
60 APPLIED LIFE SCIENCES; ACTIN; ALDOSTERONE; ANTIOXIDANTS; BLOOD PRESSURE; DNA REPAIR; FIBROSIS; GENES; HEME; HYPERTENSION; LIGANDS; LIVER; MESSENGER-RNA; MUSCLES; OXIDATION; OXYGEN; RATS; RECEPTORS; SCAVENGING; STRAND BREAKS; TRANSCRIPTION FACTORS