Methylglyoxal and pulmonary hypertension in broiler chickens

by Khajali, F.; Liyanage, R.; Wideman, R. F.

Methylglyoxal (MG) is a dicarbonyl molecule that forms during glycolysis and normally is detoxified via the glyoxalase system. Methylglyoxal is highly reactive with various amino acid residues in proteins, leading to oxidative stress and irreversible protein damage. Increased levels of MG have been associated with endothelial damage and vascular remodeling contributing to the development of systemic arterial hypertension in mammals. This study was conducted to determine whether administering exogenous MG can trigger pulmonary hypertension (increased pulmonary arterial pressure) in broilers. Hematological assays and preliminary mass spectrometric analyses also were conducted using blood samples from broilers that had been injected intramuscularly with either saline or MG to determine whether MG triggers either a toxic response or oxidative posttranslational modification of hemoglobin within 24 h postinjection. Clinically healthy male broilers received 100-mu L intravenous injections of sa-line and then MG, followed by a 500-mu L intramuscular injection. Neither intravenous nor intramuscular injections of saline altered the pulmonary arterial pressure, whereas both intravenous and intramuscular MG injections triggered pulmonary hypertension attributable to increased pulmonary vascular resistance. The precise mode of action by which MG triggers pulmonary vasoconstriction remains to be determined. Pulse oximetry, hematology, and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time-of-flight spectra data did not provide evidence of an overt toxic response to MG, nor was modification of hemoglobin detected, although increased heterophil: lymphocyte ratios did demonstrate that MG caused a stress response. To the best of our knowledge the present results constitute the first demonstration in any vertebrate species that exogenously administered MG rapidly initiates pulmonary hypertension attributable to pulmonary vasoconstriction.

Poultry Science
Start Page
1525-3171; 0032-5791