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Revista médica de Chile

versión impresa ISSN 0034-9887


AGUILAR, Simón A. et al. Melatonin modulates the expression of pulmonary prostanoids. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2019, vol.147, n.3, pp.281-288. ISSN 0034-9887.


Living above 2,500 meters in hypobaric conditions induces pulmonary arterial hypertension of the neonate (PAHN), a syndrome whose main features are: pathological remodeling of the pulmonary vessels, abnormal vascular reactivity and increased oxidative stress. Melatonin could have pulmonary antioxidant, anti-remodeling and vasodilating properties for this condition.


To determine the effect of melatonin at the transcript level of prostanoid pathways in the lung of neonatal lambs gestated and born under hypobaric hypoxia.

Material and Methods:

Vehicle (1.4% of ethanol, n = 6) or melatonin (1 mg * kg1, n = 5) were administered from the postnatal day 4 to 21 to lambs gestated and born at 3,600 meters above sea level. After one week of treatment completion, lung tissue was obtained, the transcript and protein levels of prostanoid synthases and receptors were assessed by RT-PCR and Western Blot.


Melatonin induced the expression of prostacyclin synthase transcript and increased protein expression of the prostacyclin receptor. In addition, the treatment decreased the expression of transcript and protein of cyclooxygenase-2, without changes in the expression of the prostanoid vasoconstrictor (thromboxane) pathway.


Postnatal treatment with melatonin increases the expression of the prostacyclin-vasodilator pathway without changing the vasoconstrictor thromboxane pathway. Further, the decreased COX-2 induced by melatonin could be an index of lesser oxidative stress and inflammation in the lung.

Palabras clave : Hypoxia; Hypertension; Pulmonary; Newborn; Melatonin; Prostaglandins.

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