Increased magnitude of relaxation to oestrogen in aorta from oestrogen receptor β knock-out mice

B. O. Nilsson, E. Ekblad, T. Heine, Jan-Ake Gustafsson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Scopus citations


Micromolar concentrations of the biologically active oestrogen 17β-oestradiol reduce agonist-induced force in vascular preparations through an unidentified mechanism. The aim of the present study was to investigate the importance of oestrogen receptor β (ERβ) for oestrogen-induced vascular relaxation. 17β-oestradiol was added to aortic tings from ERβ knock-out (-/-) and wild-type (+/+) mice precontracted with noradrenaline. 17β-oestradiol caused a concentration-dependent (1-100 μM) relaxation of aortic rings from both -/- and +/+ animals of both sexes. Rings from male and female -/- mice were more sensitive to 17β-oestradiol than those from +/+ mice. Medial thickness, determined by computerized image analysis, was similar in tings from -/- and +/+ animals. Endothelium, as determined by immuno-cytochemistry, was present in -/- and +/+ aorta. Maximal noradrenaline evoked force and sensitivity to noradrenaline were similar in both groups. In summary ERβ modulates vascular relaxation to μM concentrations of oestrogen; lack of ERβ renders the vascular wall supersensitive to 17β-oestradiol. Lack of ERβ caused no change in vascular wall morphology suggesting that this ER subtype is not involved in vascular structure development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Endocrinology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology

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