Gene expression of cyclooxygenase in the aging heart

Jung Won Kim, Bong Sook Baek, Yun Kyung Kim, Jeremiah T. Herlihy, Yuji Ikeno, Byung Pal Yu, Hae Young Chung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Cyclooxygenase (COX) is the key rate-limiting enzyme in the prostaglandin synthetic pathway. Two isoforms of COX have been identified: a constitutive COX-1 and an inducible COX-2, which is activated in response to various stimuli. We investigated the changes of COX-1 and COX-2 in rat heart during aging. We measured the age-related changes in the mRNA and protein levels of COX by using reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and Western blotting, respectively. COX-2 mRNA and protein levels increased with age, whereas those of COX-1 showed no change. The COX activity determined by prostaglandin E2 production increased with age. Because the COX-catalyzed arachidonate cascade is an important source of reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation, changes in ROS generation and lipid peroxidation were also assessed. The amount of ROS generated by the COX pathway increased with age, as did the total ROS generation and lipid peroxidation. These results show that COX-2 activity increases with age, partially because of elevated transcriptional expression and protein content, and they suggest that increased COX-2 can play a role in oxidative alterations in the aged heart.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)B350-B355
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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