Differences in blacks and whites with essential hypertension: biochemistry and endocrine. State of the art lecture.
Overall, there is agreement that the origins of hypertension have a genetic basis. The genetic factors interact with environmental factors that influence expression and intensity of the disorder. As summarized in Table 1, there is evidence from the literature to identify pathways for the development of hypertension in blacks. Organ pathology, characteristic of the clinical phenotypic hypertension, consists of increased peripheral vascular resistance and left ventricular hypertrophy, and, particularly in blacks, nephrosclerosis. In this scheme, an intermediate phenotype is a biochemical or endocrine marker of gene expression that participates in the regulation of blood pressure. Intermediate phenotypic characteristics of essential hypertension include sodium sensitivity, adrenergic activity, cation transport, and endocrine function including renin-angiotensin-aldosterone, kallikrein-kinin, and prostaglandin. Another intermediate phenotype to be included in this discussion is insulin resistance. These intermediate phenotypes of cell and subcellular function are regulated by candidate genes. Alternatively, an intermediate phenotype can be expressed in response to another intermediate phenotype. For example, sodium sensitivity could be mediated by the cation transport mechanism of Na,K-ATPase, or insulin resistance could be induced by an elevated level of adrenergic activity. Gene expression of the intermediate phenotype is also modulated by environmental factors such as dietary sodium, potassium, or calcium, and social stresses or patterns of physical activity.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
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