Presentation Title (IN ALL CAPS)

Low-dose aspirin during pregnancy does not prevent maternal hypertension and vascular dysfunction in a rat model with preeclampsia-like symptoms

Departmental Affiliation and City, State, Zip for All Authors

University of North Texas Health Science Center, Institute for Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases, 3500 Camp Bowie Boulevard, Fort Worth, Texas 76107

Classification

GSBS Student (For Competition)

Research Presentation Category

Basic Science Research

Brief Narrative or Summary

In this study, we tested if aspirin treatment decreases high blood pressure in pregnant rats. Rats are routinely used as models of pregnancy. We found that low dose aspirin does not reduce blood pressure in pregnant rats and causes abnormal function of the blood vessels when administered in the presence of inflammation.

Scientific Abstract

Background: Daily low-dose aspirin after 12 weeks of gestation is recommended as a preventive intervention for women at high risk for preeclampsia. Treatment of pregnant rats with a specific ligand of the innate immune receptor Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) induces maternal hypertension and vascular dysfunction. Hypothesis: We hypothesized that maternal treatment with low-dose aspirin during gestation would ameliorate TLR9-induced hypertension and vascular dysfunction in pregnant rats. Methods: Pregnant rats were treated with a synthetic ligand of TLR9 (ODN2395) or saline (vehicle) during the third trimester. Aspirin treatment started on GD10 and continued throughout gestation. Experimental groups include: control (no treatment), ODN2395 (300 μg), aspirin (1.5 mg/kgBW), aspirin+ODN2395. Blood pressure was measured on GD19 and mesenteric artery function was assessed on GD21 using wire myography. Results: ODN2395-treated rats had higher blood pressure on GD19 compared to vehicle-treated dams and aspirin did not ameliorate ODN2395-induced hypertension (control: 97 ± 0.4 mmHg, ODN2395: 121 ± 7 mmHg, aspirin: 101 ± 5 mmHg, aspirin+ODN2395: 121 ± 7 mmHg, p<0.05). Aspirin treatment increased the sensitivity of the maternal arteries to phenylephrine and reduced sensitivity to acetylcholine in ODN2395-treated rats (p<0.05). Fetal and placental weights did not change in response to any treatment. Litter size was reduced in ODN2395-treated animals. Conclusion: Treatment with low-dose aspirin throughout gestation did not prevent the development of TLR9-induced maternal hypertension and increased vasoconstriction. Low-dose aspirin treatment alone may not be adequate to prevent increases in maternal blood pressure induced by bacterial infections.

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Low-dose aspirin during pregnancy does not prevent maternal hypertension and vascular dysfunction in a rat model with preeclampsia-like symptoms

Background: Daily low-dose aspirin after 12 weeks of gestation is recommended as a preventive intervention for women at high risk for preeclampsia. Treatment of pregnant rats with a specific ligand of the innate immune receptor Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) induces maternal hypertension and vascular dysfunction. Hypothesis: We hypothesized that maternal treatment with low-dose aspirin during gestation would ameliorate TLR9-induced hypertension and vascular dysfunction in pregnant rats. Methods: Pregnant rats were treated with a synthetic ligand of TLR9 (ODN2395) or saline (vehicle) during the third trimester. Aspirin treatment started on GD10 and continued throughout gestation. Experimental groups include: control (no treatment), ODN2395 (300 μg), aspirin (1.5 mg/kgBW), aspirin+ODN2395. Blood pressure was measured on GD19 and mesenteric artery function was assessed on GD21 using wire myography. Results: ODN2395-treated rats had higher blood pressure on GD19 compared to vehicle-treated dams and aspirin did not ameliorate ODN2395-induced hypertension (control: 97 ± 0.4 mmHg, ODN2395: 121 ± 7 mmHg, aspirin: 101 ± 5 mmHg, aspirin+ODN2395: 121 ± 7 mmHg, p<0.05). Aspirin treatment increased the sensitivity of the maternal arteries to phenylephrine and reduced sensitivity to acetylcholine in ODN2395-treated rats (p<0.05). Fetal and placental weights did not change in response to any treatment. Litter size was reduced in ODN2395-treated animals. Conclusion: Treatment with low-dose aspirin throughout gestation did not prevent the development of TLR9-induced maternal hypertension and increased vasoconstriction. Low-dose aspirin treatment alone may not be adequate to prevent increases in maternal blood pressure induced by bacterial infections.