The present study examined the protective role of the venous endothelium against aggregating platelets and its modulation by diet. Yorkshire pigs were fed a regular chow (control pigs), 2% high-cholesterol diet (for 10 weeks, cholesterol-fed pigs), and regular chow plus cod-liver oil (30 ml/day for 4 weeks, oil-fed pigs). Endothelium-dependent responses were examined in vitro in rings of femoral veins in the presence of the inhibitor of cyclooxygenase indomethacin. In control pigs, aggregating platelets, serotonin, and ADP caused endothelium-dependent relaxations. The platelet-induced relaxations were attenuated by methiothepin (a combined 5-HT1 and 5-HT2 serotonergic blocker) or apyrase (an ADPase and ATPase) and were abolished by the combination of the two agents. In quiescent rings, platelet caused contractions, which were reduced in the presence of endothelium; the contractions were prevented by ketanserin (a 5-HT2 serotonergic blocker) or methiothepin but not by R 68070 (a thromboxane A2 receptor blocker) or dazoxiben (a thromboxane-synthetase blocker). In cholesterol-fed pigs, the platelet-induced relaxations were not altered, whereas in oil-fed pigs, the endothelium-dependent relaxations to platelets, serotonin, and ADP were augmented. Platelet-induced contractions were significantly reduced in rings with endothelium from oil-fed pigs, whereas the contractions were comparable in rings without endothelium among the three groups. Endothelium-dependent relaxations in response to the calcium ionophore A23187, direct relaxations in response to sodium nitroprusside, and direct contractions in response to potassium chloride were comparable among the three groups. These results indicate that 1) the endothelium exerts inhibitory effects against aggregating platelets in porcine femoral veins, 2) the relaxations are mediated by serotonin and ADP released from the aggregating platelets, 3) platelet-induced contractions are mediated by serotonin with little contribution of thromboxanes, and 4) hypercholesterolemia does not affect, but cod-liver oil facilitates, the endothelium-dependent relaxations to aggregating platelets because of augmented responses to released serotonin and ADP.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)