The Journal of Physiological Sciences

, Volume 67, Issue 3, pp 373–385 | Cite as

The role of apelin in the healing of water-immersion and restraint stress-induced gastric damage

  • İlknur Birsen
  • Burcu Gemici
  • Nuray Acar
  • İsmail Üstünel
  • V. Nimet İzgüt-Uysal
Original Paper


The objective of this study was to explore the role of apelin in the healing of gastric lesions induced by stress. Male Wistar rats were exposed to water immersion and restraint stress (WIRS) for 6 h with or without the apelin receptor antagonist F13A. The rats were killed on the 1st, 3rd, 5th or 10th day after the end of stress induction. Apelin and hypoxia-inducible factor-1α expression was increased on the 1st day after the end of stress exposure and was decreased daily thereafter. However, F13A retarded the healing of gastric lesions by preventing the improvement of mucosal blood flow, prostaglandin E2 production and vascular endothelial growth factor expression in rats exposed to WIRS. Additionally, F13A increased the gastric 4-hydroxynonenol + malondialdehyde content on the 1st and 3rd days after the end of stress induction but did not affect the change in gastric mucosal nitric oxide levels. In conclusion, apelin may be a regulatory protein involved in the healing mechanism of stress-induced gastric damage.


Apelin F13A Gastric mucosa Lesion Water immersion and restraint stress 



G protein-linked orphan receptor


Water immersion and restraint stress


Apelin receptor antagonist


Gastric mucosal blood flow


Vascular endothelial growth factor


Epidermal growth factor


Prostaglandin E2


Nitric oxide


Hypoxia-inducible factor







This work was supported by The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK) funded by the Turkish Government (Project number: 110S447).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors report no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© The Physiological Society of Japan and Springer Japan 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • İlknur Birsen
    • 1
  • Burcu Gemici
    • 1
  • Nuray Acar
    • 2
  • İsmail Üstünel
    • 2
  • V. Nimet İzgüt-Uysal
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physiology, Faculty of MedicineAkdeniz UniversityAntalyaTurkey
  2. 2.Department of Histology and Embryology, Faculty of MedicineAkdeniz UniversityAntalyaTurkey

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