Urotensin II-related peptide (URP) is a novel endogenous ligand for urotensin II receptor (UT-R). To investigate the pathophysiological role of URP in heart failure, we examined URP, UII and UT-R expression in hearts and kidneys of rats with congestive heart failure due to coronary ligation by quantitative RT-PCR and immunocytochemistry. Significantly increased expression levels of URP mRNA were found in the atrium, the right ventricle and the infarcted part of left ventricle of heart failure rats, when compared with sham-operated rats (about 2.2-fold, 2.7-fold and 3.9-fold, respectively). Expression levels of UII mRNA in the heart were about 10% of URP mRNA, and were slightly increased only in the infarcted part of left ventricle of heart failure rats, when compared with sham-operated rats. The expression levels of UT-R mRNA were increased in the atrium of heart failure rats. There was no significant change of URP, UII and UT-R mRNA expression levels in the kidney between heart failure and sham-operated rats. The myocardium was diffusely immunostained with URP in both rats. The blood vessels in the heart were positively immunostained with URP in heart failure rats, but not in sham-operated rats, whereas they were positively immunostained with UT-R in both rats. These findings suggest that the expression of URP, UII and UT-R is enhanced in failing heart, and the UII/URP/UT-R system has important pathophysiological roles in the progression of heart failure.
- Heart failure
- Urotensin II
- Urotensin II-related peptide
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience