Abstract 3672: Loss of Perivascular Adipocyte Paracrine Function Leads to Increased Vascular Tone and Glucose Intolerance in Hypertension
In order to investigate the contribution of perivascular adipose tissue (PVAT) to arterial function, a total of 55 small arteries harvested from 35 skin biopsies of patients with Metabolic Syndrome and matched controls were mounted as ring preparations in a wire myograph. Contractility to cumulative doses of Norepinephrine in the presence or absence of PVAT showed an anticontractile effect in arteries from healthy volunteers (p=0.009), which was lost in patients with Metabolic Syndrome. Bioassay studies confirmed that PVAT releases a hydrophilic anticontractile factor in health, which is absent in obesity. Using a soluble fragment of the human Type 1 receptor, we identified that the anticontractile factor was adiponectin, which is the sole mediator of vasodilation, acting by increasing endothelial bioavailability of nitric oxide. Significant endothelial dysfunction was observed in patients with Metabolic Syndrome (p<0.001). Quantitative image analysis of adipose tissue revealed significantly increased adipocyte cell size in patients with Metabolic Syndrome, compared with healthy controls (p<0.006). There was immunohistochemical evidence of inflammation with upregulation of TNF-alpha receptor 1 in these patients (p<0.001). Application of exogenous TNF-alpha abolished the anticontractile effect of PVAT by reducing adiponectin bioavailability. Oxidative stress also induced by cytokines TNF-alpha and IL-6 but not IL-1, reduced adiponectin production from PVAT and increased basal tone. When the obese microenvironment was replicated in vitro by inflicting hypoxia on PVAT, adiponectin activity was lost but then rescued by incubation with cytokine antagonists. Further application of the adiponectin receptor fragment abolished PVAT relaxation. We conclude that in healthy arteries, PVAT releases adiponectin which reduces vascular tone. In obesity, this is lost by a cascade of adipocyte hypertrophy, hypoxia, inflammation and oxidative stress. The resulting vasoconstriction contributes to hypertension, hypertriglyceridaemia and insulin resistance. Direct targeting of adiponectin release from PVAT therefore provides a novel therapeutic opportunity in the Metabolic Syndrome.