Lymphangions, the segments of lymphatic vessels between two adjacent lymphatic valves, actively pump lymph. Acute changes in transmural pressure and lymph flow have profound effects on lymphatic pump function in vitro. Chronic changes in pressure and flow in vivo have also been reported to lead to significant changes in lymphangion function. Because changes in pressure and flow are both cause and effect of adaptive processes, characterizing adaptation requires a more fundamental analysis of lymphatic muscle properties. Therefore, the purpose of the present work was to use an intact lymphangion isovolumetric preparation to evaluate changes in mesenteric lymphatic muscle mechanical properties and the intracellular Ca(2+) in response to sustained mesenteric venous hypertension. Bovine mesenteric veins were surgically occluded to create mesenteric venous hypertension. Postnodal mesenteric lymphatic vessels from mesenteric venous hypertension (MVH; n = 6) and sham surgery (Sham; n = 6) animals were isolated and evaluated 3 days after the surgery. Spontaneously contracting MVH vessels generated end-systolic active tension and end-diastolic active tension lower than the Sham vessels. Furthermore, steady-state active tension and intracellular Ca(2+) concentration levels in response to KCl stimulation were also significantly lower in MVH vessels compared with those of the Sham vessels. There was no significant difference in passive tension in lymphatic vessels from the two groups. Taken together, these results suggest that following 3 days of mesenteric venous hypertension, postnodal mesenteric lymphatic vessels adapt to become weaker pumps with decreased cytosolic Ca(2+) concentration.
- EdemaInterstitial Fluid BalanceStress