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Record 28 of 967
Bone Blood Flow During Simulated Microgravity: Physiological and Molecular Mechanisms
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Author and Affiliation:
Bloomfield, Susan A.(Texas A&M Univ., College Station, TX United States)
Abstract: Blood flow to bone has been shown to affect bone mass and presumably bone strength. Preliminary data indicate that blood flow to the rat femur decreases after 14 days of simulated microgravity, using hindlimb suspension (HLS). If adult rats subjected to HLS are given dobutamine, a synthetic catecholamine which can cause peripheral vasodilation and increased blood flow, the loss of cortical bone area usually observed is prevented. Further, mechanisms exist at the molecular level to link changes in bone blood flow to changes in bone cell activity, particularly for vasoactive agents like nitric oxide (NO). The decreases in fluid shear stress created by fluid flow associated with the shifts of plasma volume during microgravity may result in alterations in expression of vasoactive agents such as NO, producing important functional effects on bone cells. The primary aim of this project is to characterize changes in 1) bone blood flow, 2) indices of bone mass, geometry, and strength, and 3) changes in gene expression for modulators of nitric oxide activity (e.g., nitric oxide synthase) and other candidate genes involved in signal transduction of mechanical loading after 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28 days of HLS in the adult rat. Using a rat of at least 5 months of age avoids inadvertently studying effects of simulated microgravity on growing, rather than adult, bone. Utilizing the results of these studies, we will then define how altered blood flow contributes to changes in bone with simulated microgravity by administering a vasodilatory agent (which increases blood flow to tissues) during hindlimb suspension. In all studies, responses in the unloaded hindlimb bones (tibial shaft, femoral neck) will be compared with those in the weightbearing humeral shaft and the non-weightbearing calvarium (skull) from the same animal. Bone volumetric mineral density and geometry will be quantified by peripheral quantitative CT; structural and material properties of the long bones will be determined by 3-point bending (tibia, humerus) or compression (femoral neck) testing to failure. A unique aspect of these studies will be defining the time course of changes in gene expression in bone cell populations with unloading, accomplished with Northern blots, in situ hybridization, and immunohistochemistry. These studies have high relevance for concurrent protocols being proposed by investigators on NSBRI Cardiovascular and Muscle teams, with blood flow data available on a number of tissues other than bone. Further, dobutamine and other Beta-agonists have been tested as countermeasures for altered muscle and cardiovascular function. Results of the intervention tested in our studies have potential relevance for a number of systemic changes seen with prolonged spaceflight.
Publication Date: Sep 30, 1999
Document ID:
(Acquired Apr 14, 2000)
Document Type: Technical Report
Publication Information: National Space Biomedical Research Institute; B-8 - B-9; (SEE 20000029456)
Financial Sponsor: NASA Johnson Space Center; Houston, TX United States
Organization Source: Texas A&M Univ.; College Station, TX United States
Description: 2p; In English
Distribution Limits: Unclassified; Publicly available; Unlimited
Rights: No Copyright
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