The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Vasodilation to vascular endothelial growth factor in the uterine artery of the pregnant rat is blunted by low dietary protein intake

Itoh, Shigeru, Brawley, Lee, Wheeler, Timothy, Anthony, Frederick W., Poston, Lucilla and Hanson, Mark A. (2002) Vasodilation to vascular endothelial growth factor in the uterine artery of the pregnant rat is blunted by low dietary protein intake Pediatric Research, 51, (4), pp. 485-491.

Record type: Article


Pregnancy is associated with a substantial increase in uterine artery blood flow, which may in part result from dilation in response to vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Uterine blood flow is reported to be reduced in globally diet-restricted pregnant rats. Both global and protein dietary restriction in pregnancy produce programmed effects in offspring. In this study we hypothesized that protein restriction in pregnancy impairs maternal uterine artery responses to VEGF.
Vascular responses to VEGF were determined in isolated uterine arteries of pregnant (18 or 19 d of gestation) Wistar rats fed a diet containing either 18% or 9% casein throughout pregnancy. For comparison, responses to phenylephrine, potassium chloride, and acetylcholine were determined. In addition, the response of the mesenteric artery to VEGF was studied in the same animals. A significant reduction of the maximal relaxation to VEGF (p = 0.041) and in the overall response (p = 0.004) to VEGF was found in uterine arteries of the 9% compared with the 18% group, but responses to all other agonists were similar. The VEGF response was reduced by cyclooxygenase inhibition (indomethacin) in both groups. In the 18%, but not the 9%, group it was further reduced by nitric oxide synthase inhibition (N?-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester).
VEGF was shown to dilate the mesenteric artery but this effect was not significantly altered by the low-protein diet. These results show an attenuated uterine artery vasodilator response to VEGF produced by a low-protein diet in pregnancy, partly because of a reduction of the nitric oxide component of VEGF-mediated relaxation.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: 2002


Local EPrints ID: 25650
ISSN: 0031-3998
PURE UUID: e2be7cd2-c69f-485d-90af-760ad3e61816

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 20 Apr 2006
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 16:09

Export record


Author: Shigeru Itoh
Author: Lee Brawley
Author: Timothy Wheeler
Author: Frederick W. Anthony
Author: Lucilla Poston
Author: Mark A. Hanson

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.