Background: The beneficial effect of aprotinin, a naturally occurring protease inhibitor, on preservation of organs such as the liver, kidney and lung has been documented.
Objective: To explore the effects of hepatic ischemia and reperfusion on both liver and myocardial function, using a dual isolated perfused organ model with and without aprotinin.
Methods: Isolated rat livers were stabilized for 30 minutes with oxygenated modified Krebs-Henseleit solution at 37°C. Livers were then perfused continuously with KH or KH + aprotinin 106 KIU/L for an additional 135 min. Livers of two other groups were made globally ischemic for 120 min, then perfused for 15 min with KH or with KH + aprotinin. Isolated hearts (Langendorff preparation) were stabilized for 30 min and then reperfused with KH or KH + aprotinin exiting the liver for 15 min. The liver’s circuit was disconnected, and hearts were re-circulated with the accumulated liver + heart effluent for an additional 50 min.
Results: In the ischemia and ischemia + aprotinin groups, portal vein pressure (1 and 15 min reperfusion) was 331±99% and 339±61% vs. 308±81% and 193±35% of baseline, respectively (P<0.03 vs. ischemia). There were no other differences in the enzyme leakage between aprotinin-treated or untreated ischemic livers. Left ventricular pressure was stable in the controls.
However, LV pressure in groups perfused with ischemic liver effluent declined within 65 min reperfusion, whether aprotinin treated or not (84±8% and 73±5% of baseline, respectively, P<0.004 only for ischemia vs. control)
Conclusion: When aprotinin was used, LV pressure was inclined to be higher while liver portal vein pressure was lower, thus providing protection against liver and heart reperfusion injury.
* These authors contributed equally to the article
KH = Krebs-Henseleit
LV = left ventricular