Introduction Decreased platelet number and/or function have been related to patent ductus arterious (DA). Activated platelets release vasoactive products, including serotonin (5-HT) that might be relevant for DA homeostasis DA. The chicken embryo has emerged as a suitable model for the study of DA vascular biology. In the present study, we investigated the possible vasoactive role of 5-HT in the chicken DA.
Methods Rings of the DA of 15- to 20-d-old chicken embryos (total incubation time 21-d) were studied in a wire myograph. The response to 5-HT was investigated under different O2 tensions (3, 7, and 74 kPa). The responses to the 5-HT1B/D receptor agonist sumatriptan, the 5-HT2A/B/C receptor agonist DOI and the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors fluoxetine and sertraline were also investigated.
Results 5-HT (10 nM-0.3 mM) contracted the pulmonary side of the DA (PulmDA) in a concentration-dependent manner. By contrast, 5-HT induced negligible contractions in the vessels that surround the PulmDA (i.e., the pre- and post-ductal pulmonary arteries, and the aortic side of the DA). 5-HT-induced contraction increased with development (15-d >17-d >19-d=20-d). O2 tension did not affect 5-HT-induced contraction but elimination of extracellular calcium completely abolished it. Sumatriptan and DOI also contracted the PulmDA in a concentration-dependent manner. By contrast, fluoxetine and sertraline evoked contractions at very high concentrations (>0.1 mM).
Conclusions Our data indicate that 5-HT receptors are functionally present in the chicken DA and suggest that platelet-derived 5-HT may play a pivotal role in the postnatal closure of the DA.