Local Peroxynitrite Impairs Endothelial Transient Receptor Potential Vanilloid 4 Channels and Elevates Blood Pressure in Obesity

Academic Article


  • Background: Impaired endothelium-dependent vasodilation is a hallmark of obesity-induced hypertension. The recognition that Ca2+ signaling in endothelial cells promotes vasodilation has led to the hypothesis that endothelial Ca2+ signaling is compromised during obesity, but the underlying abnormality is unknown. In this regard, transient receptor potential vanilloid 4 (TRPV4) ion channels are a major Ca2+ influx pathway in endothelial cells, and regulatory protein AKAP150 (A-kinase anchoring protein 150) enhances the activity of TRPV4 channels. Methods: We used endothelium-specific knockout mice and high-fat diet-fed mice to assess the role of endothelial AKAP150-TRPV4 signaling in blood pressure regulation under normal and obese conditions. We further determined the role of peroxynitrite, an oxidant molecule generated from the reaction between nitric oxide and superoxide radicals, in impairing endothelial AKAP150-TRPV4 signaling in obesity and assessed the effectiveness of peroxynitrite inhibition in rescuing endothelial AKAP150-TRPV4 signaling in obesity. The clinical relevance of our findings was evaluated in arteries from nonobese and obese individuals. Results: We show that Ca2+ influx through TRPV4 channels at myoendothelial projections to smooth muscle cells decreases resting blood pressure in nonobese mice, a response that is diminished in obese mice. Counterintuitively, release of the vasodilator molecule nitric oxide attenuated endothelial TRPV4 channel activity and vasodilation in obese animals. Increased activities of inducible nitric oxide synthase and NADPH oxidase 1 enzymes at myoendothelial projections in obese mice generated higher levels of nitric oxide and superoxide radicals, resulting in increased local peroxynitrite formation and subsequent oxidation of the regulatory protein AKAP150 at cysteine 36, to impair AKAP150-TRPV4 channel signaling at myoendothelial projections. Strategies that lowered peroxynitrite levels prevented cysteine 36 oxidation of AKAP150 and rescued endothelial AKAP150-TRPV4 signaling, vasodilation, and blood pressure in obesity. Peroxynitrite-dependent impairment of endothelial TRPV4 channel activity and vasodilation was also observed in the arteries from obese patients. Conclusions: These data suggest that a spatially restricted impairment of endothelial TRPV4 channels contributes to obesity-induced hypertension and imply that inhibiting peroxynitrite might represent a strategy for normalizing endothelial TRPV4 channel activity, vasodilation, and blood pressure in obesity.
  • Published In

  • Circulation  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Ottolini M; Hong K; Cope EL; Daneva Z; Delalio LJ; Sokolowski JD; Marziano C; Nguyen NY; Altschmied J; Haendeler J
  • Start Page

  • 1318
  • End Page

  • 1333