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Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology

Clinical Articles, Lead Article

Exenatide gives endothelial protection against IR injury

Exenatide protects against impairment in endothelium-dependent vasodilatation induced by ischaemia-reperfusion (IR) injury, through the opening of KATP channels, according to a study1 published recently in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology.

In the study, 20 volunteers were randomly assigned to either subcutaneous exenatide (10 μg) or placebo administration. At 30 minutes after the drug administration, endothelium-dependent flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) of the radial artery was measured before and after IR injury.

Seven days later, both groups were crossed over and received the alternative treatment, before undergoing the same protocol. There were no significant differences between the two groups in pre-IR radial artery diameter, FMD, or baseline radial artery diameter after IR injury. After placebo administration, IR significantly blunted FMD, the authors found.

Exenatide was shown to prevent this impairment (FMD before IR: 15.0±7.14%; FMD after IR: 15.0±5.96%). In a separate protocol, this protective effect was completely abolished by pre-treatment with glibenclamide (glyburide, 5 mg), a blocker of KATP channels (n=7; FMD before IR: 12.0±2.2%; after IR: 3.2±2.1%).

Forearm venous occlusion plethysmography

Forearm venous occlusion plethysmography


1. Ha SJ, Kim W, Woo JS, et al. Preventive effects of exenatide on endothelial dysfunction induced by ischemia-reperfusion injury via KATP channels. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2011​ATVBAHA.110.222653/

Published on: November 15, 2012

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