Vascular superoxide (O˙2 (-)) and inflammation contribute to hypertension. The mitochondria are an important source of O˙2 (-); however, the regulation of mitochondrial O˙2 (-) and the antihypertensive potential of targeting the mitochondria remain poorly defined. Angiotensin II and inflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin 17A and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα) significantly contribute to hypertension. We hypothesized that angiotensin II and cytokines co-operatively induce cyclophilin D (CypD)-dependent mitochondrial O˙2 (-) production in hypertension. We tested whether CypD inhibition attenuates endothelial oxidative stress and reduces hypertension. CypD depletion in CypD(-/-) mice prevents overproduction of mitochondrial O˙2 (-) in angiotensin II-infused mice, attenuates hypertension by 20 mm Hg, and improves vascular relaxation compared with wild-type C57Bl/6J mice. Treatment of hypertensive mice with the specific CypD inhibitor Sanglifehrin A reduces blood pressure by 28 mm Hg, inhibits production of mitochondrial O˙2 (-) by 40%, and improves vascular relaxation. Angiotensin II-induced hypertension was associated with CypD redox activation by S-glutathionylation, and expression of the mitochondria-targeted H2O2 scavenger, catalase, abolished CypD S-glutathionylation, prevented stimulation mitochondrial O˙2 (-), and attenuated hypertension. The functional role of cytokine-angiotensin II interplay was confirmed by co-operative stimulation of mitochondrial O˙2 (-) by 3-fold in cultured endothelial cells and impairment of aortic relaxation incubated with combination of angiotensin II, interleukin 17A, and tumor necrosis factor-α which was prevented by CypD depletion or expression of mitochondria-targeted SOD2 and catalase. These data support a novel role of CypD in hypertension and demonstrate that targeting CypD decreases mitochondrial O˙2 (-), improves vascular relaxation, and reduces hypertension.
© 2016 American Heart Association, Inc.