Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Get Your Blood Moving: Increased Blood Flow Could Lead To Healthier Blood Vessels

24.01.2003


Findings Show The Force of Blood Flow Has Anti-Inflammatory Effect



Scientists have found a new way in which exercise may protect against heart disease. Increased blood flow can mimic the powerful anti-inflammatory actions of certain glucocorticoid steroid drugs, according to researchers at the University of Pennsylvania’s Institute for Medicine and Engineering. The researchers discovered that an increase in shear stress - the drag force exerted by blood flowing over endothelial cells that line blood vessels - results in the same sort of anti-inflammatory events normally associated with high doses of steroids.

Their findings will be presented in the January 24th online edition of Circulation Research: Journal of the American Heart Association, followed by the print edition of the journal on February 21st.


"Inflammation in blood vessels has been linked to atherosclerosis, a hardening of the arteries, and here we see how the physical force of blood flow can cause cells to produce their own anti-inflammatory response," said Scott L. Diamond, PhD, director of the Penn’s Biotechnology Program and a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at Penn’s School of Engineering and Applied Science. "Conceivably, exercise provides the localized benefits of glucocorticoids - just as potent as high doses of steroids, yet without all the systemic side effects of taking the drugs themselves."

"Perhaps this is a natural way in which exercise helps protect the vessels, by stimulating an anti-inflammatory program when the vessels are exposed to elevated blood flow. We’re not talking about running a marathon here, we’re just talking about getting the blood moving at high arterial levels," said Diamond.

It is the first direct evidence that the mechanical effects of blood flow have anti-inflammatory properties. According to their findings, shear stress can activate glucocorticoid receptors (GR) to enter the nucleus of the cells, an event normally triggered by glucocorticoid steroids. Once inside the nucleus, the activated GR binds to the DNA to turn genes on and off.

Diamond and his colleagues studied the effect of shear stress on glucocorticoid receptors in endothelial cells grown in culture by recreating in the laboratory the flow environment of the large arteries. Sustained shear stress - in the form of a steady stream of liquid flowing across the cell culture - caused GRs to move into the cell nuclei where they triggered the transcription of a specially designed reporter gene. In fact, the effect of shear stress alone had the same effect as dexamethasone, a glucocorticoid steroid used to treat inflammation.

The researchers helped confirmed these findings in vivo by examining a portion of the human mammary artery and discovering that the blood flow had indeed caused GR to be localized in the nucleus of the endothelial cells. While the anti-inflammatory effects of exercise training has yet to be documented in vivo, Diamond believes the findings are applicable to living blood vessels.

"Think of blood flow as a stream: whenever a stream branches off you get small areas of recirculation eddies or pools of stagnant water. These same situations of disturbed flow irritate the endothelium. When blood vessels branch off, all the arterial flotsam - fats and activated blood cells - can clump and stick at these hot spots for atherosclerotic plaque formation," said Diamond. "Perhaps, elevated blood flow may alter these disease prone regions to relieve some of the localized inflammation."

The Institute for Medicine and Engineering was established jointly by Penn’s School of Medicine and Penn’s School of Engineering and Applied Science. Its focus is on interdisciplinary research and education fundamental to the application of advances in the treatment of disease.

Other Penn researchers involved in this study include Julie Y. Ji and Huiyan Jing of the Institute for Medicine and Engineering. Funding for this research comes from the National Institutes of Health.

Greg Lester | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://health.upenn.edu/News/News_Releases/jan03/Shear_Stress.html
http://www.med.upenn.edu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Diabetes mellitus: A risk factor for early colorectal cancer
27.05.2020 | Nationales Centrum für Tumorerkrankungen (NCT) Heidelberg

nachricht Ultra-thin fibres designed to protect nerves after brain surgery
27.05.2020 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Small Protein, Big Impact

In meningococci, the RNA-binding protein ProQ plays a major role. Together with RNA molecules, it regulates processes that are important for pathogenic properties of the bacteria.

Meningococci are bacteria that can cause life-threatening meningitis and sepsis. These pathogens use a small protein with a large impact: The RNA-binding...

Im Focus: K-State study reveals asymmetry in spin directions of galaxies

Research also suggests the early universe could have been spinning

An analysis of more than 200,000 spiral galaxies has revealed unexpected links between spin directions of galaxies, and the structure formed by these links...

Im Focus: New measurement exacerbates old problem

Two prominent X-ray emission lines of highly charged iron have puzzled astrophysicists for decades: their measured and calculated brightness ratios always disagree. This hinders good determinations of plasma temperatures and densities. New, careful high-precision measurements, together with top-level calculations now exclude all hitherto proposed explanations for this discrepancy, and thus deepen the problem.

Hot astrophysical plasmas fill the intergalactic space, and brightly shine in stellar coronae, active galactic nuclei, and supernova remnants. They contain...

Im Focus: Biotechnology: Triggered by light, a novel way to switch on an enzyme

In living cells, enzymes drive biochemical metabolic processes enabling reactions to take place efficiently. It is this very ability which allows them to be used as catalysts in biotechnology, for example to create chemical products such as pharmaceutics. Researchers now identified an enzyme that, when illuminated with blue light, becomes catalytically active and initiates a reaction that was previously unknown in enzymatics. The study was published in "Nature Communications".

Enzymes: they are the central drivers for biochemical metabolic processes in every living cell, enabling reactions to take place efficiently. It is this very...

Im Focus: New double-contrast technique picks up small tumors on MRI

Early detection of tumors is extremely important in treating cancer. A new technique developed by researchers at the University of California, Davis offers a significant advance in using magnetic resonance imaging to pick out even very small tumors from normal tissue. The work is published May 25 in the journal Nature Nanotechnology.

researchers at the University of California, Davis offers a significant advance in using magnetic resonance imaging to pick out even very small tumors from...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Dresden Nexus Conference 2020: Same Time, Virtual Format, Registration Opened

19.05.2020 | Event News

Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium AWK'21 will take place on June 10 and 11, 2021

07.04.2020 | Event News

International Coral Reef Symposium in Bremen Postponed by a Year

06.04.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

Why developing nerve cells can take a wrong turn

04.06.2020 | Life Sciences

The broken mirror: Can parity violation in molecules finally be measured?

04.06.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

Innocent and highly oxidizing

04.06.2020 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>