Journal of applied physiology (Bethesda, Md. : 1985)

Mechanisms of systemic vasodilation by lysozyme-c in septic shock.

PMID 22096116


In septic shock (SS), cardiovascular collapse is caused by the release of inflammatory mediators. We previously found that lysozyme-c (Lzm-S), released from leukocytes, contributed to systemic vasodilation in a canine model of SS. We then delineated the pathway by which this occurs in a canine carotid artery organ bath preparation (CAP). We showed that Lzm-S could intrinsically generate hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) and that H(2)O(2) subsequently reacted with endogenous catalase to form compound I, an oxidized form of catalase. In turn, compound I led to an increase in cyclic guanosine 3',5'-monophosphate to produce vasodilation. However, it was not clear from previous studies whether it is necessary for Lzm-S to bind to the vasculature to cause vasodilation or, alternatively, whether the generation of H(2)O(2) by Lzm-S in the surrounding medium is all that is required. We examined this question in the present study in which we used multiple preparations. In a partitioned CAP, we found that when we added Lzm-S to a partitioned space in which a semipermeable membrane prevented diffusion of Lzm-S to the carotid artery tissue, vasodilation still occurred because of diffusion of H(2)O(2). On the other hand, we found that Lzm-S could accumulate within the vascular smooth muscle layer (VSML) after 7 h of SS in a canine model. We also determined that when Lzm-S was located in close proximity to vascular smooth muscle cells, it could generate H(2)O(2) to produce lengthening in a human cell culture preparation. We conclude that there are two mechanisms by which Lzm-S can cause vasodilation in SS. In one instance, H(2)O(2) generated by Lzm-S in plasma diffuses to the VSML to cause vasodilation. In a second mechanism, Lzm-S directly binds to the VSML, where it generates H(2)O(2) to produce vasodilation.