Polystyrene microspheres decrease bronchial artery resistance in anesthetized sheep

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9 Scopus citations


The use of microspheres to measure tissue blood flow requires that the microspheres themselves do not alter regional arterial tone. To determine whether microspheres affected bronchial artery resistance, we cannulated and perfused the bronchial artery in anesthetized sheep. In seven sheep, the change in bronchial artery pressure at constant flow was recorded during infusion of 5 doses (1 x 105, 2 x 105, 5 x 105, 1 x 106, and 1.5 x 106) of 15-μm microspheres. Microspheres produced a dose-dependent, self-limited decrease in bronchial artery pressure (1.5 x 106 microspheres decreased bronchial artery pressure by 36% for 31 min). This was a decrease in bronchial artery resistance, as evidenced by a shift in the slope, but not the intercept, of a pressure-flow curve (n = 4 sheep). Left atrial injection of 1 x 107 microspheres decreased bronchial artery resistance by 17% in six sheep with intact bronchial arteries in which flow was measured by ultrasound probe. The adenosine-receptor antagonist 8-phenyltheophylline attenuated the fall in resistance by 79% (n = 4 sheep). Cyclooxygenase inhibition by indomethacin attenuated the response by 37% (n = 4 sheep). These results suggest that microspheres caused the release of adenosine and a vasodilator prostaglandin. Repetitive measurements of bronchial blood flow by microspheres could overestimate true bronchial blood flow if the interval between measurements is <30 min.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H1037-H1043
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number3 38-3
StatePublished - 1995


  • 8-phenyltheophylline
  • adenosine
  • indomethacin
  • prostacyclin
  • vasodilation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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