Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/2440/121997
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Type: Journal article
Title: Relaxin deficiency leads to uterine artery dysfunction during pregnancy in mice
Author: Marshall, S.
Senadheera, S.
Jelinic, M.
O'Sullivan, K.
Parry, L.
Tare, M.
Citation: Frontiers in Physiology, 2018; 9(MAR)
Publisher: Frontiers
Issue Date: 2018
ISSN: 1664-042X
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Sarah A. Marshall, Sevvandi N. Senadheera, Maria Jelinic, Kelly O’Sullivan, Laura J. Parry and Marianne Tare
Abstract: The uterine vasculature undergoes profound adaptations in response to pregnancy. Augmentation of endothelial vasodilator function and reduced smooth muscle reactivity are factors contributing to uterine artery adaptation and are critical for adequate placental perfusion. The peptide hormone relaxin has an important role in mediating the normal maternal renal vascular adaptations during pregnancy through a reduction in myogenic tone and an increase in flow-mediated vasodilation. Little is known however about the influence of endogenous relaxin on the uterine artery during pregnancy. We tested the hypothesis that relaxin deficiency increases myogenic tone and impairs endothelial vasodilator function in uterine arteries of late pregnant relaxin deficient (Rln−/−) mice. Reactivity of main uterine arteries from non-pregnant and late pregnant wild-type (Rln+/+) and Rln−/− mice was studied using pressure and wire myography and changes in gene expression explored using PCR. Myogenic tone was indistinguishable in arteries from non-pregnant mice. In late pregnancy uterine artery myogenic tone was halved in Rln+/+ mice (P < 0.0001), an adaptation that failed to occur in arteries from pregnant Rln−/− mice. The role of vasodilator prostanoids in the regulation of myogenic tone was significantly reduced in arteries of pregnant Rln−/− mice (P = 0.02). Agonist-mediated endothelium-dependent vasodilation was significantly impaired in non-pregnant Rln−/− mice. With pregnancy, differences in total endothelial vasodilator function were resolved, although there remained an underlying deficiency in the role of vasodilator prostanoids and alterations to the contributions of calcium-activated K+ channels. Fetuses of late pregnant Rln−/− mice were ~10% lighter (P < 0.001) than those of Rln+/+ mice. In conclusion, relaxin deficiency is associated with failed suppression of uterine artery myogenic tone in pregnancy, which likely contributes to reduced uteroplacental perfusion and fetal growth restriction.
Keywords: Relaxin; pregnancy; uterine artery; myogenic tone; smooth muscle reactivity; endothelium-dependent relaxation; calcium-activated potassium channels
Rights: © 2018 Marshall, Senadheera, Jelinic, O’Sullivan, Parry and Tare. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
DOI: 10.3389/fphys.2018.00255
Grant ID: http://purl.org/au-research/grants/nhmrc/1064845
Appears in Collections:Aurora harvest 4
Environment Institute publications

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