Pre-clinical studies have identified nitroxyl (HNO), the reduced congener of nitric oxide (NO), as a potent vasodilator which is resistant to tolerance development. The present study explores the efficacy of HNO in human blood vessels and describes, for the first time, a vasodilator for humans that is not susceptible to tolerance. Human radial arteries and saphenous veins were obtained from patients undergoing coronary artery graft surgery and mounted in organ baths. Repeated vasodilator responses to the HNO donor Angeli's salt (AS) and NO donor glyceryl trinitrate (GTN) were determined. AS- and GTN-induced concentration-dependent vasorelaxation of both human radial arteries (AS pEC50: 6.5±0.2; −log M) and saphenous veins (pEC50: 6.7±0.1) with similar potency. In human radial arteries, GTN-induced relaxation was reduced by the NO scavenger hydroxocobalamin (HXC; P<0.05) but was unaffected by the HNO scavenger L-cysteine. Alternately, AS was unaffected by HXC but was reduced by L-cysteine (5-fold shift, P<0.05). The sGC (soluble guanylate cyclase) inhibitor ODQ abolished responses to both AS and GTN in arteries and veins (P<0.05). Inhibition of voltage-dependent potassium channels (Kv channels) with 4-AP also significantly reduced responses to AS (pEC50: 5.5) and GTN, suggesting that the relaxation to both redox congeners is cGMP- and Kv channel-dependent. Critically, a concentration-dependent development of tolerance to GTN (1 and 10 μM; P<0.05), but not to AS, was observed in both saphenous veins and radial arteries. Like GTN, the HNO donor AS causes vasorelaxation of human blood vessels via activation of a cGMP-dependent pathway. Unlike GTN, however, it does not develop tolerance in human blood vessels.

You do not currently have access to this content.