Objective: Pulmonary hypertension (PH) due to left heart disease (group 2), especially in the setting of heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF), is the most common cause of PH worldwide; however, at present, there is no proven effective therapy available for its treatment. PH-HFpEF is associated with insulin resistance and features of metabolic syndrome. The stable prostacyclin analog, treprostinil, is an effective and widely used Food and Drug Administration-approved drug for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension. While the effect of treprostinil on metabolic syndrome is unknown, a recent study suggests that the prostacyclin analog beraprost can improve glucose intolerance and insulin sensitivity. We sought to evaluate the effectiveness of treprostinil in the treatment of metabolic syndrome-associated PH-HFpEF. Approach and Results: Treprostinil treatment was given to mice with mild metabolic syndrome-associated PH-HFpEF induced by high-fat diet and to SU5416/obese ZSF1 rats, a model created by the treatment of rats with a more profound metabolic syndrome due to double leptin receptor defect (obese ZSF1) with a vascular endothelial growth factor receptor blocker SU5416. In high-fat diet-exposed mice, chronic treatment with treprostinil reduced hyperglycemia and pulmonary hypertension. In SU5416/Obese ZSF1 rats, treprostinil improved hyperglycemia with similar efficacy to that of metformin (a first-line drug for type 2 diabetes mellitus); the glucose-lowering effect of treprostinil was further potentiated by the combined treatment with metformin. Early treatment with treprostinil in SU5416/Obese ZSF1 rats lowered pulmonary pressures, and a late treatment with treprostinil together with metformin improved pulmonary artery acceleration time to ejection time ratio and tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion with AMPK (AMP-activated protein kinase) activation in skeletal muscle and the right ventricle. Conclusions: Our data suggest a potential use of treprostinil as an early treatment for mild metabolic syndrome-associated PH-HFpEF and that combined treatment with treprostinil and metformin may improve hyperglycemia and cardiac function in a more severe disease.
|Number of pages||16|
|Journal||Arteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 2020|
- glucose intolerance
- metabolic syndrome
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine