Increase of angiotensin converting enzyme gene expression in the hypertensive aorta.
To investigate the possible role of vascular angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) in the development and maintenance of hypertension, we examined aortic ACE messenger RNA (mRNA) levels in two-kidney, one clip (2K1C) hypertensive rats. The blood pressure was increased remarkably at 4 weeks (early stage) after clipping and remained elevated at 12 weeks (chronic stage). The aorta ACE mRNA levels were significantly elevated in both early and chronic stages concurrently with the increases in aortic ACE activity and blood pressure. The plasma renin activity rose markedly at 4 weeks, but returned to the normal level at 12 weeks. Neither ACE activity in the lung and plasma, nor ACE mRNA level in the lung was altered at either stage. The aorta and liver angiotensinogen mRNA levels and renal renin mRNA level were increased at 4 weeks but decreased at 12 weeks. These results indicate that the acceleration of all components in the renin-angiotensin system may contribute to the development of 2K1C hypertension in the early stage. In the chronic stage, the increased vascular ACE induced by the elevated ACE mRNA levels in the aorta may play the primary role in the acceleration of local angiotensin II formation and thus may sustain the hypertension.
- Copyright © 1992 by American Heart Association