Chronic resveratrol treatment restores vascular responsiveness of cerebral arterioles in type 1 diabetic rats

Denise M. Arrick, Hong Sun, Kaushik P. Patel, William G. Mayhan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Decreased dilation of cerebral arterioles via an increase in oxidative stress may be a contributing factor in the pathogenesis of diabetes-induced complications leading to cognitive dysfunction and/or stroke. Our goal was to determine whether resveratrol, a polyphenolic compound present in red wine, has a protective effect on cerebral arterioles during type 1 diabetes (T1D). We measured the responses of cerebral arterioles in untreated and resveratrol-treated (10 mg·kg-1·day-1) nondiabetic and diabetic rats to endothelial (eNOS) and neuronal (nNOS) nitric oxide synthase (NOS)-dependent agonists and to a NOS-independent agonist. In addition, we harvested brain tissue from nondiabetic and diabetic rats to measure levels of superoxide under basal conditions. Furthermore, we used Western blot analysis to determine the protein expression of eNOS, nNOS, SOD-1, and SOD-2 in cerebral arterioles and/or brain tissue from untreated and resveratrol-treated nondiabetic and diabetic rats. We found that T1D impaired eNOS-and nNOSdependent reactivity of cerebral arterioles but did not alter NOSindependent vasodilation. While resveratrol did not alter responses in nondiabetic rats, resveratrol prevented T1D-induced impairment in eNOS-and nNOS-dependent vasodilation. In addition, superoxide levels were higher in brain tissue from diabetic rats and resveratrol reversed this increase. Furthermore, eNOS and nNOS protein were increased in diabetic rats and resveratrol produced a further increased eNOS and nNOS proteins. SOD-1 and SOD-2 proteins were not altered by T1D, but resveratrol treatment produced a decrease in SOD-2 protein. Our findings suggest that resveratrol restores vascular function and oxidative stress in T1D. We suggest that our findings may implicate an important therapeutic potential for resveratrol in treating T1D-induced cerebrovascular dysfunction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H696-H703
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Adenosine 5'-diphosphate
  • Brain
  • N-methyl-D-aspartic acid
  • Nitroglycerin
  • Oxidative stress
  • Superoxide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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