The effect of endothelial nitric oxide synthase on the hemodynamics and wall mechanics in murine arteriovenous fistulas

Academic Article


  • Creation of a hemodialysis arteriovenous fistula (AVF) causes aberrant vascular mechanics at and near the AVF anastomosis. When inadequately regulated, these aberrant mechanical factors may impede AVF lumen expansion to cause AVF maturation failure, a significant clinical problem with no effective treatments. The endothelial nitric oxide synthase (NOS3) system is crucial for vascular health and function, but its effect on AVF maturation has not been fully characterized. We hypothesize that NOS3 promotes AVF maturation by regulating local vascular mechanics following AVF creation. Here we report the first MRI-based fluid-structure interaction (FSI) study in a murine AVF model using three mouse strains: NOS3 overexpression (NOS3 OE) and knockout (NOS3−/−) on C57BL/6 background, with C57BL/6 as the wild-type control (NOS3+/+). When compared to NOS3+/+ and NOS3−/−, AVFs in the OE mice had larger lumen area. AVFs in the OE mice also had smoother blood flow streamlines, as well as lower blood shear stress at the wall, blood vorticity, inner wall circumferential stretch, and radial wall thinning at the anastomosis. Our results demonstrate that overexpression of NOS3 resulted in distinct hemodynamic and wall mechanical profiles associated with favorable AVF remodeling. Enhancing NOS3 expression may be a potential therapeutic approach for promoting AVF maturation.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Scientific Reports  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Pike D; Shiu YT; Cho YF; Le H; Somarathna M; Isayeva T; Guo L; Symons JD; Kevil CG; Totenhagen J
  • Volume

  • 9
  • Issue

  • 1