Monocrotaline-induced structural remodeling of the intra-acinar pulmonary arteries and pulmonary hypertension

Research paper by Li Wen-ying, Che Dong-yuan

Indexed on: 01 Dec '92Published on: 01 Dec '92Published in: Journal of Tongji Medical University = Tong ji yi ke da xue xue bao


The monocrofaline-induced structural changes of small pulmonary arteries in rat and their relationship with pulmonary hypertension and right ventricular hypertrophy were observed by determining the right ventricular systolic pressure, and by light and electron microscope and morphometry. One to 38 days after last injection of monocrotaline (MCT), a medial thickening and lumen marrrowing of the circular muscular arteries (CMA), accompanying terminal (TB) and respiratory bronchioles (RB), were found. And there after the lumen of CMA, accompanying TB, became dilated, and its medial thickness (MT) decreased, whereas the histopathologic changes of the partially muscular arteries (PMA), accompanying RB, became severe, their MT increased continuously, and finally reached the peak value on Day 50. At the first day after last MCT treatment, inflammation and muscularization were found in PMA and nonmuscular arteries (NMA), and became more severe with the cause of disease. Therefore, the intra-acinar pulmonary arteries, both CMA and PMA, increased in number while the NMA decreased in number significantly because of the structural remodeling. Four days after MCT treatment, the right ventricular systolic pressure began to rise, and reached its peak value on Day 50. Eight days after MCT injection, right ventricular hypertrophy developed, and became most significant from Day 23 to Day 30. The results suggest that structural remodeling, i.e. muscularization, of intra-acinar pulmonary arteries plays an important role in the development of pulmonary hypertension and right ventricular hypertrophy.