1. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of repeated exposure to stress on tail blood pressure (TBP) of normal as well as GCA (glycyrrhizic acid) and steroid treated rats. Male Sprague-Dawley rats (250 g) were exposed to ether vapour to achieve light anaesthesia prior to TBP recording. Rats were injected with either normal saline or naloxone prior to exposure to stress. Tail blood pressure was recorded daily for 2 weeks. 2. We found that ether stress caused a transient drop in TBP in control as well as in dexamethasone (DEX) treated rats. The stress-induced fall in blood pressure was reduced by naloxone in control rats but not in DEX treated rats. However the transient drop in TBP following stress was not seen in either GCA or deoxycorticosterone (DOC) treated rats. 3. We conclude that first, the reduction in TBP was due to the release of endogenous opioids caused by stress. Second, DOC may block the release of such endogenous opioids, preventing the drop in TBP in response to stress, while DEX did not. Third, GCA caused a similar mineralocorticoid effect on reversing stress induced hypotension.
1. Steroid hormones have been shown to regulate the concentration of adrenergic and muscarinic receptors in many tissues. 2. The cyclic adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (cAMP) content in rat lung tissues in response to either dexamethasone, corticosterone, deoxycorticosterone or progesterone for 7 days were measured following intraperitoneal injection of isoprenaline just before sacrificed. 3. There was a significant increase in cAMP level (P less than 0.001) in dexamethasone and corticosterone-treated rats compared to controls that received isoprenaline alone. 4. Pretreatment with deoxycorticosterone and progesterone suppressed the increase in cAMP in response to isoprenaline. 5. The effect of glucocorticoids in causing bronchodilatation in asthmatic patients is partly due to the restoration of adenyl cyclase responsiveness to beta-agonist.
The possible role of cyclic adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (cAMP) in mediating the action of steroid hormones was investigated using the rat lung. Male rats were adrenalectomized and treated with olive oil, dexamethasone, corticosterone, deoxycorticosterone (DOC) or progesterone. At the end of 10 days, 100 micrograms isoprenaline/kg was injected intraperitoneally 5 min before the animals were killed to stimulate cAMP production. Adrenalectomy significantly decreased cAMP levels in the rat lung. Dexamethasone and corticosterone pretreatment reversed the effect of adrenalectomy whereas progesterone pretreatment but not DOC pretreatment significantly decreased lung cAMP levels. Cyclic AMP levels in normal female rats, whether pregnant or not, were not significantly different from those in male rats. We concluded that the absence of glucocorticoid, as after adrenalectomy, decreased the cAMP levels in rat lungs and that this could be reversed by either dexamethasone or corticosterone replacement. Progesterone reduced the cAMP content in rat lungs by acting as a glucocorticoid antagonist or by acting directly via progesterone receptors.
1. The present study examined the effect of naloxone (NAL), glycyrrhizic acid (GCA), deoxycorticosterone (DOC) and dexamethasone (DEX) on daily repeated 2 h chronic restrained stress (RS) on the locomotor activity (LA) of rats tested in the open field arena to elucidate the possible roles of opioids, glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids in response to stress. 2. Intact and adrenalectomized (ADX) rats were either injected with 0.1 mL of NAL (0.32 microgram/100 g BW), 2.4 mg/kg DOC or 120 micrograms/kg DEX or had 1.0 mg/mL GCA dissolved in their drinking water or normal saline (for the ADX group) dissolved in their drinking water. 3. In intact groups, treatment with NAL completely blocked the stress response and treatment with GCA, DOC and DEX partially prevented the stress response. Adaptation occurred on either days 4, 5, 6 or 7 for intact rats treated with DEX, DOC, GCA or control rats, respectively. All ADX control rats died following the first 2 h RS. Adrenalectomized rats treated with DEX or DOC adapted later compared with intact rats, while rats given either GCA or NAL were unable to block or adapt to chronic RS. 4. These findings demonstrate that the stress response is primarily mediated by endogenous opioids, in that it is blocked by NAL. Both mineralocorticoids and glucocorticoids, which can act centrally to inhibit endorphins, partially blocked the stress response. The effect of GCA in intact rats was similar to that of both DEX and DOC in intact rats. Adrenalectomized rats treated with GCA (despite their lack of endogenous corticosterone) showed a stress response that was significantly different from the other ADX groups, implying that GCA had effects independent of endogenous corticosterone.
Matched MeSH terms: Desoxycorticosterone/pharmacology*; Desoxycorticosterone/therapeutic use
The 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11beta-HSD) protects the testis from the inhibitory effects of corticosterone on testosterone (T) production. The objectives of the present studies were to determine the effects of deoxycorticosterone (DOC) and its mechanism of actions on testicular 11beta-HSD activity and plasma T levels after 7 days of treatment. The results revealed that at the end of 7 days treatment, DOC significantly increased testicular 11beta-HSD activity and plasma T levels in normal rats. However, the time course showed that high plasma T levels lowered 11beta-HSD activity on day 14 and by 21 days both the levels normalized. In adrenalectomized (ADX) rats, only the enzyme activity increased significantly but not plasma T levels. Spironolactone, a competitive inhibitor of mineralocorticoid receptor (MR), did not change testicular 11beta-HSD activity in both normal and DOC treated rats suggesting that DOC did not act through MR in increasing 11beta-HSD activity. On the other hand, spironolactone significantly decreased plasma T levels in DOC treated rats. Progesterone (P), a competitive inhibitor of glucocorticoid receptors (GR) or corticosterone significantly suppressed testicular enzyme activity and plasma T levels in DOC treated normal rats. Carbenoxolone which is an inhibitor of 11beta-HSD activity significantly depressed testicular 11beta-HSD activity and plasma T levels in DOC treated normal rats. This paper suggests that DOC increased testicular 11beta-HSD activity through GR; whilst increase in plasma T levels required functioning adrenal glands. The testicular 11beta-HSD is one of the regulators of T levels and vice versa.
1. Glucocorticosteroid may relieve bronchospasm by mediating changes in the muscarinic receptor concentration and/or its affinity. 2. Cholinergic muscarinic receptors were determined by using Scatchard's plots from radioligand binding assays of 0.13-3.2 nM [3H]quinuclidinyl benzylate binding to the membrane fraction of bronchial smooth muscle (BSM). 3. The concentration of muscarinic receptor in BSM of normal rat was 57 +/- 3 fmol mg protein and the dissociation constant was 0.07 +/- 0.02 nM. Dexamethasone and corticosterone reduced muscarinic receptor concentration to 50-60% of basal with no changes in receptor affinity. No changes were found in rat treated with deoxycorticosterone. 4. These findings suggest that glucocorticoids but not mineralocorticoid relieve bronchospasm at least partly by reducing the cholinergic hypersensitivity.
1. The effects of corticosteroid pretreatment on acetylcholine (ACH)-induced contraction of bronchial smooth muscle (BSM) were studied. 2. ACH dose-response curves for dexamethasone (DM)- and corticosterone (B)-treated but not deoxycorticosterone (DOC)-treated BSM were significantly shifted to the right; this provides evidence that glucocorticoid treatment reduced the sensitivity of BSM to ACH. 3. Morphine enhanced BSM contraction in response to ACH by 20%. DM suppressed this enhancement. 4. These findings correlated well with the reduction of muscarinic receptor numbers in BSM by glucocorticoids in our previous study. In addition, glucocorticoids reduced the sensitivity of BSM to opioids.
11 beta-Hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11 beta-OHSD) is a microsomal enzyme that catalyzes the dehydrogenation of cortisol (F) to cortisone (E) in man and corticosterone (B) to 11-dehydrocorticosterone (A) in rats. 11 beta-OHSD has been identified in a wide variety of tissues. The differential distribution of 11 beta-OHSD suggests that this enzyme has locally defined functions that vary from region to region. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of the glucocorticoids B and dexamethasone (DM), the mineralocorticoid deoxycorticosterone (DOC), and the inhibitors of 11 beta-OHSD glycyrrhizic acid (Gl) and glycyrrhetinic acid (GE) on 11 beta-OHSD bioactivity at the hypothalamus (HT) and anterior pituitary (AP). Male Wistar rats were treated with GI or were adrenalectomized (ADX) and treated with either B, DM, or DOC for 7 days. All treatments were in vivo except GE, which was used in vitro. At the end of treatment, homogenates of HT and AP were assayed for 11 beta-OHSD bioactivity, expressed as the percentage conversion of B to A in the presence of NADP, 11 beta-OHSD bioactivity is significantly higher (P < 0.0001) in the AP compared with the HT. Adrenalectomy significantly increased the enzyme activity in the AP (P < 0.05), an effect reversed by B or DM. ADX rats treated with DOC showed decreased enzyme activity in the AP (P < 0.001) but increased the activity in the HT (P < 0.0001). Gl increased activity in both HT and AP, whereas GE decreased activity significantly. We conclude that the modulation of 11 beta-OHSD is both steroid specific and tissue specific.