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01.12.2019 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2019 Open Access

BMC Nephrology 1/2019

Spironolactone ameliorates endothelial dysfunction through inhibition of the AGE/RAGE axis in a chronic renal failure rat model

BMC Nephrology > Ausgabe 1/2019
Chun-Cheng Wang, An-Sheng Lee, Shu-Hui Liu, Kuan-Cheng Chang, Ming-Yi Shen, Chiz-Tzung Chang
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Spironolactone can improve endothelial dysfunction in the setting of heart failure and diabetes models. However, its beneficial effect in the cardiovascular system is not clear in the setting of non-diabetic renal failure. We conducted this study to investigate whether spironolactone can ameliorate endothelial dysfunction in a 5/6 nephrectomy model, and to determine the underlying mechanism.


Twenty-four Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into four groups. A renal failure model was created using the 5/6 nephrectomy method. The four groups included: Sham-operation group (Group1), chronic kidney disease (CKD; Group2), CKD + ALT-711 (advanced glycation end products [AGEs] breaker; Group 3), and CKD + spironolactone group (Group4). Acetylcholine (Ach)-mediated vasodilatation responses were compared between the four groups. To investigate the underlying mechanism, we cultured human aortic endothelial cells (HAECs) for in-vitro assays.
Differences between two groups were determined with the paired student’s t test. Differences between three or more groups were determined through one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) with post-hoc analysis with LSD method.


Compared with Group 1, Group 2 has a significantly impaired Ach-mediated vasodilatation response. Group 3 and 4 exhibited improved vasoreactivity responses. To determine the underlying mechanism, we performed an in-vitro study using cultured HAECs. We noted significant sirtuin-3 (SIRT3) protein downregulation, reduced phosphorylation of endothelial nitric oxide synthase at serine 1177 (p-eNOS), and increased intracellular oxidative stress in cultured HAECs treated with AGEs (200 μg/mL). These effects were counter-regulated when cultured HAECs were pretreated with spironolactone (10 μM). Furthermore, the increased p-eNOS production by spironolactone was abrogated when the HAECs were pretreated with tenolvin (1 μM), a SIRT3 inhibitor.


Spironolactone could ameliorate endothelial dysfunction in a 5/6 nephrectomy renal failure model through AGEs/Receptor for AGEs (RAGEs) axis inhibition, SIRT3 upregulation, and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase-2 (NOX-2) and its associated intracellular oxidative stress attenuation.
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