Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Protein Identified that Plays Role in Blood Flow

22.09.2008
MU researchers use microscopic technology to get closer to understanding vascular diseases

For years, researchers have known that high blood pressure causes blood vessels to contract and low blood pressure causes blood vessels to relax. Until recently, however, researchers did not have the tools to determine the exact proteins responsible for this phenomenon.

Now, using atomic force microscopy - a microscope with very high resolution - and isolating blood vessels outside the body, University of Missouri researchers have identified a protein that plays an important role in the control of tissue blood flow and vascular resistance. This new knowledge brings researchers one step closer to understanding vascular diseases, such as high blood pressure, diabetes and other vascular problems.

“This study provides new insights that clarify the role of specific proteins and the vascular smooth muscle cells that control the mechanical activity of blood vessels,” said Gerald Meininger, professor and director of MU’s Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center. “We have identified an important receptor that is responsible for the ability of small arteries in the body. This research provides new clues for the cause of vascular diseases, such as high blood pressure and diabetes and may be used in the future as a possible therapeutic target.”

The researchers isolated blood vessels from the body and used atomic force microscopy to apply a controlled force to particular proteins located on the surface of smooth muscle cells from the blood vessel wall. When force was applied to the proteins, the smooth muscle cells reacted, and constricted or contracted depending on the proteins that were targeted. Testing several proteins, researchers were able to pinpoint which proteins played a role in the mechanics of blood vessels.

In 90 to 95 percent of high blood pressure cases the cause is unknown, according to the American Heart Association. Understanding the role of these proteins in controlling blood vessel function will eventually lead researchers to better answers for treating and preventing vascular disease, Meininger said.

The study “Extracellular matrix-specific focal adhesions in vascular smooth muscle produce mechanically active adhesion sties,” was published in the American Journal of Physiology Cell Physiology. It was co-authored by Meininger; Zhe Sun, assistant research professor in the Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center; Luis Martinez-Lemus, assistant professor in the MU School of Medicine and investigator in the center; and Michael Hill, professor in the school and investigator in the center.

Kelsey Jackson | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.missouri.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Fish recognize their prey by electric colors
13.11.2018 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht The dawn of a new era for genebanks - molecular characterisation of an entire genebank collection
13.11.2018 | Leibniz-Institut für Pflanzengenetik und Kulturpflanzenforschung

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A Chip with Blood Vessels

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Im Focus: A Leap Into Quantum Technology

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

Im Focus: Research icebreaker Polarstern begins the Antarctic season

What does it look like below the ice shelf of the calved massive iceberg A68?

On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.

Im Focus: Penn engineers develop ultrathin, ultralight 'nanocardboard'

When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure

Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...

Im Focus: Coping with errors in the quantum age

Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly

The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

European Space Talks: Weltraumschrott – eine Gefahr für die Gesellschaft?

23.10.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

The dawn of a new era for genebanks - molecular characterisation of an entire genebank collection

13.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Fish recognize their prey by electric colors

13.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Ultrasound Connects

13.11.2018 | Awards Funding

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>