Peripheral adrenergic receptors in hypertension.
Increased sympathoadrenal activity appears to play an important role in the development or maintenance of elevated blood pressure in hypertensive patients and various animal models of hypertension. Alterations of adrenergic receptor number or responsiveness might contribute to this increased activity. We therefore reviewed the data on adrenergic receptor alterations in hypertension with special emphasis on several key cardiovascular tissues (i.e., heart, vascular smooth muscle, and kidney) and on lymphocytes and platelets as human tissues available for such studies. The data suggest that the number of alpha-adrenergic receptors in hypertension is regulated by catecholamines, dietary salt intake, and genetic factors. Increases in renal alpha-adrenergic receptor number may be etiologic in genetic forms of essential hypertension. beta-Adrenergic receptor alterations in states of elevated blood pressure do not appear to be specific for genetic hypertension. Desensitization of beta-adrenergic receptor function in hypertensive animals and patients contrasts with reports of decreased, unchanged, and increased beta-adrenergic receptor number, suggesting that signal transduction of beta-adrenergic (and possibly other) receptors that stimulate adenylyl cyclase is disturbed in hypertension. The mechanisms of such heterologous desensitization in states of elevated blood pressure remain to be elucidated.
- Copyright © 1990 by American Heart Association