Hypertension III: Flow-Induced Vascular Remodeling

Remodeling in large and small arteries of rats and mice.

Joseph L. Unthank

Dear Dr. DeMey,

Your comparisons of shear-mediated remodeling in large and small vessels are very interesting.  I too suspect that there are significant differences in the responses/adaptations seen in conduit vs. resistance arteries.  You make excellent points for the importance of studying shear-mediated remodeling in resistance vessels.  Regarding your current presentation, I have 2 questions.

First, Miyashiro, Poppa, and Berk have recently reported (Circ. Res. 81(3):311-19, 1997) that luminal expansion and medial thickening occur in rat carotid arteries subjected to flow increases of 40-50%.  Why do you think this type of remodeling is observed in rats but not mice?

Second, since age can make a very significant difference in the remodeling observed in large and small arteries (Miyashiro et al, and Tuttle in this symposium), were the rats and mice of comparable ages? While you explain why you can't make comparisons of mesenteric arteries in mice, have you compared responses of mesenteric and carotid arteries for similar levels of flow elevation in rats?

Thanks for your interesting contributions to this symposium.  Hope you are enjoying the meeting.

Best Regards,


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