These studies characterized cardiovascular responses after an acute inhalation exposure to COREXIT EC9500A, the oil dispersant used in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent a single 5-h inhalation exposure to COREXIT EC9500A (average exposure level 27.12 mg/m(3)) or air. On d 1 and 7 following the exposure, rats were implanted with indwelling catheters and changes in heart rate and blood pressure were assessed in response to increasing levels of adrenoreceptor agonists. A separate group of rats was euthanized at the same time points, ventral tail arteries were dissected, and vascular tone along with dose-dependent responses to vasoconstricting and dilating factors were assessed in vitro. Agonist-induced dose-dependent increases in heart rate and blood pressure were greater in COREXIT EC9500A-exposed than in air-exposed rats at 1 d but not 7 d after the exposure. COREXIT EC9500A exposure also induced a rise in basal tone and reduced responsiveness of tail arteries to acetylcholine-induced vasodilation at 1 d but not 7 d following the exposure. These findings demonstrate that an acute exposure to COREXIT EC9500A exerts transient effects on cardiovascular and peripheral vascular functions.
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