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1. Biventricular hypertrophy has been described in a high blood pressure variability (BPV) model of sinoaortic-denervated (SAD) rats without systemic hypertension. To explore the possible involvement of the lung in SAD-induced right ventricular hypertrophy (RVH), we examined lung morphology, in addition to systemic haemodynamics and ventricle morphology, in Wistar-Kyoto rats 32 weeks after SAD.

2. In Wistar-Kyoto rats 32 weeks after SAD, there existed a substantial elevation in BPV, with no change in the average level of arterial pressure. Biventricular hypertrophy following SAD was characterized by a greater hypertrophy in right than left ventricles; both absolute and normalized right ventricular weights were significantly increased by 22 and 27%, respectively, and only normalized left ventricular weight was significantly increased by 12%. No infarcts were found in any ventricles examined.

3. In the lung, the most prominent change following SAD was pulmonary vasculopathy, including wall thickening, perivascular fibrosis and cell infiltration. In pulmonary arteries with an internal diameter of 70–130 µm, the external diameter, wall thickness and wall thickness to internal diameter ratio were increased in SAD compared with control rats.

4. There was no correlation between right and left ventricular weights. In contrast with BPV-correlated left ventricular weight, right ventricular weight was correlated with the wall thickness of the pulmonary artery, but not with BPV.

5. These findings suggest that greater RVH following SAD is associated with pulmonary vasculopathy, but is not secondary to the left ventricular problems or high BPV.
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Keywords: baroreceptors; blood pressure variability; chemoreceptors; pulmonary arteries; right ventricular hypertrophy

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Pharmacology, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai, China

Publication date: July 1, 2004

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