Age-Dependent Susceptibility to Alcohol-Induced Cerebral Artery Constriction
Author(s): Anna N Bukiya, Olga Seleverstov, Shivantika Bisen and Alex M Dopico
Background. Age has been recognized as an important contributor into susceptibility to alcohol-driven pathology. Purpose. We aimed at determining whether alcohol-induced constriction of cerebral arteries was age-dependent. Study design. We used rat middle cerebral artery (MCA) in vitro diameter monitoring, patch-clamping and fluorescence labeling of myocytes to study an age-dependent increase in the susceptibility to alcohol in 3 (50 g), 8 (250 g), and 15 (440 g) weeks-old rats. Results. An age-dependent increase in alcohol-induced constriction of MCA could be observed in absence of endothelium, which is paralleled by an age-dependent increase in both protein level of the calcium-/voltage-gated potassium channel of large conductance (BK) accessory β1 subunit and basal BK channel activity. Ethanolinduced BK channel inhibition is increased with age. Conclusions. We demonstrate an increased susceptibility of MCA to ethanol-induced constriction in a period equivalent to adolescence and early adulthood when compared to pre-adolescence. Our work suggests that BK β1 constitutes a significant contributor to age-dependent changes in the susceptibility of cerebral arteries to ethanol.