Prenatal hypoxia decreases lung extracellular superoxide dismutase expression and activity


Journal Article

Extracellular superoxide dismutase (EC-SOD), which scavenges extracellular superoxide (O2-·), is highly regulated in the developing lung. In the prenatal rabbit, EC-SOD is predominantly intracellular and inactive, and postnatally, active EC-SOD is secreted. We hypothesized that prenatal hypoxia would delay the normal postnatal secretion of active EC-SOD in the lung. Pregnant New Zealand White rabbits were exposed to hypobaric hypoxia (15,000 ft × 36 h) to alter fetal O2 tension or were maintained in room air. Lungs were harvested from preterm (28 days), term (30 ± 1 day), and 1-wk-old kits. After prenatal hypobaric hypoxia, EC-SOD mRNA expression was significantly decreased in lungs of full-term kits, whereas EC-SOD protein decreased at all ages. Immunohistochemical staining for EC-SOD showed that hypoxia delayed secretion of the isoenzyme in the airways and pulmonary vasculature. Furthermore, pulmonary EC-SOD enzyme activity was significantly decreased in the 1-wk-old kits exposed to prenatal hypoxia. We conclude that prenatal hypoxia downregulates EC-SOD expression at both the transcriptional and posttranslational levels. Furthermore, prenatal hypoxia delays secretion of active EC-SOD enzyme. These findings have important implications for the effects of prenatal asphyxia on postnatal response to oxidant stress.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Giles, BL; Suliman, H; Mamo, LB; Piantadosi, CA; Oury, TD; Nozik-Grayck, E

Published Date

  • September 1, 2002

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 283 / 3 27-3

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1040-0605

Citation Source

  • Scopus