Nitric oxide-mediated endothelium-dependent relaxation of rat thoracic aorta induced by aqueous extract of red rice fermented with Monascus ruber

Mee Ra Rhyu, Duk Kyung Kim, Hye Young Kim, Bo Kyung Kim

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Vasodilatory effects of aqueous extract of red rice fermented with Monascus ruber IFO32318 were examined on the isolated rat aorta. The water phase of fermented rice with Monascus (WP/FRM, 0.1-10 mg/ml) caused a transient relaxation of the endothelium-intact rat aorta precontracted with norepinephrine (NE, 300 nM). The WP/FRM-induced relaxation was abolished by removal of endothelium or in the presence of N(G)-nitro-L-arginine (L-NNA, 10 μM), a nitric oxide (NO) synthase inhibitor. Neither atropine, a muscarinic receptor antagonist (10 μM), nor indomethacin, a cyclooxygenase inhibitor (10 μM), altered the WP/FRM-induced endothelium-dependent relaxation. γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA), one of the principle components of the extract, did not affect the muscle tension of the aorta with intact endothelium. In addition, WP/FRM increased the production of NO in primary cultured endothelial cells from human umbilical vein. The enhanced production of NO by WP/FRM was diminished by pretreatment with L-NNA (10 μM). In conclusion, WP/FRM induces relaxation of rat aorta by releasing NO from endothelium. There seem to be some unknown factor(s) other than acetylcholine (Ach) and GABA, in the aqueous extract of red rice, which stimulate vascular endothelial cells to produce and/or release NO leading to endothelium-dependent relaxation by WP/FRM. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ireland Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-34
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Ethnopharmacology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2000 Apr 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery

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