Methylene blue reverses endotoxin-induced hypotension.


Journal Article

Hypotension in septic shock is a reflection of unregulated nitric oxide (NO) production and vascular smooth muscle guanylyl cyclase activation. We examined the effect of methylene blue on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced shock in anesthetized rabbits. Shock was induced with 150 micrograms/kg LPS after measurement of mean arterial pressure, platelet cGMP, and total plasma NO (nitrogen monoxide+S-nitrosothiol) content. Measurements were repeated before and after the intravenous administration of 1, 5, and 10 mg/kg methylene blue in response to a 55% reduction in mean arterial pressure. At baseline, mean +/- SEM arterial pressure was 88 +/- 3 mm Hg, which fell to 51 +/- 3 mm Hg after LPS (P < .05). Methylene blue at doses of 1, 5, and 10 mg/kg produced a prompt dose-dependent increase in mean arterial pressure to 69 +/- 2, 77 +/- 3, and 81 +/- 2 mm Hg, respectively (P < .05 versus mean arterial pressure after LPS) in association with normalization of plasma total NO content (P < .05); however, methylene blue did not significantly affect intraplatelet cGMP levels. Thus, methylene blue restores normal arterial pressure in rabbits with septic shock. This effect is associated with persistent elevation of intraplatelet cGMP levels and normalization of total plasma NO content. These data are consistent with methylene blue-mediated inhibition of NO synthase and/or degradation of NO in this model and suggest a novel therapeutic approach to the treatment of septic shock.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Keaney, JF; Puyana, JC; Francis, S; Loscalzo, JF; Stamler, JS; Loscalzo, J

Published Date

  • June 1, 1994

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 74 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 1121 - 1125

PubMed ID

  • 8187278

Pubmed Central ID

  • 8187278

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0009-7330

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1161/01.res.74.6.1121


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States