In 12 healthy male volunteers (27-53 yr), a placebo-controlled randomized double blind cross-over trial was performed to study the effect of the intravenous injection of 0.25, 0.5, 1, 2, 4, and 6 mg draflazine (a selective nucleoside transport inhibitor) on hemodynamic and neurohumoral parameters and ex vivo nucleoside transport inhibition. We hypothesized that an intravenous draflazine dosage without effect on hemodynamic and neurohumoral parameters would still be able to augment the forearm vasodilator response to intraarterially infused adenosine. Heart rate (electrocardiography), systolic blood pressure (Dinamap 1846 SX; Critikon, Portanje Electronica BV, Utrecht, The Netherlands) plasma norepinephrine and epinephrine increased dose-dependently and could almost totally be abolished by caffeine pretreatment indicating the involvement of adenosine receptors. Draflazine did not affect forearm blood flow (venous occlusion plethysmography). Intravenous injection of 0.5 mg draflazine did not affect any of the measured hemodynamic parameters but still induced a significant ex vivo nucleoside-transport inhibition of 31.5 +/- 4.1% (P < 0.05 vs placebo). In a subgroup of 10 subjects the brachial artery was cannulated to infuse adenosine (0.15, 0.5, 1.5, 5, 15, and 50 micrograms/100 ml forearm per min) before and after intravenous injection of 0.5 mg draflazine. Forearm blood flow amounted 1.9 +/- 0.3 ml/100 ml forearm per min for placebo and 1.8 +/- 0.2, 2.0 +/- 0.3, 3.8 +/- 0.9, 6.3 +/- 1.2, 11.3 +/- 2.2, and 19.3 +/- 3.9 ml/100 ml forearm per min for the six incremental adenosine dosages, respectively. After the intravenous draflazine infusion, these values were 1.6 +/- 0.2 ml/100 ml forearm per min for placebo and 2.1 +/- 0.3, 3.3 +/- 0.6, 5.8 +/- 1.1, 6.9 +/- 1.4, 14.4 +/- 2.9, and 23.5 +/- 4.0 ml/100 ml forearm per min, respectively (Friedman ANOVA: P < 0.05 before vs after draflazine infusion). In conclusion, a 30-50% inhibition of adenosine transport significantly augments the forearm vasodilator response to adenosine without significant systemic effects. These results suggest that draflazine is a feasible tool to potentiate adenosine-mediated cardioprotection in man.
G A Rongen, P Smits, K Ver Donck, J J Willemsen, R A De Abreu, H Van Belle, T Thien