Sex difference in the development of deoxycorticosterone-salt hypertension in the rat.
To investigate a possible sex difference in the development of deoxycorticosterone (DOC)-salt hypertension in rats, systolic blood pressure was measured over 6 weeks in unilaterally nephrectomized male and female rats with or without DOC-salt treatment. Throughout the treatment, systolic blood pressure was significantly lower in female than in male DOC-salt rats (at the end of the sixth week: 190 +/- 8 vs 163 +/- 7 mm Hg, p less than 0.05). The difference in blood pressure was also confirmed by the direct measurement of mean arterial pressure at the end of the experiment. The 24-hour urinary excretion of vasopressin was significantly higher in male control rats than in female control rats; however, no difference was observed between male and female DOC-salt rats, in which the urinary excretion of vasopressin was four to five times higher than in control rats. The plasma vasopressin concentration was higher in DOC-salt rats, but there were no differences between sexes. There were no differences in the metabolic clearance rate of vasopressin among the four groups of rats. This indicates that the elevated plasma vasopressin concentration in DOC-salt hypertensive rats is due to increased release of the hormone, rather than to impaired metabolism. Thus, although vasopressin plays a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of DOC-salt hypertension, the sexual dimorphism in this form of hypertension cannot be attributed to differences in the secretion, metabolism, or plasma concentration of vasopressin.
- Copyright © 1987 by American Heart Association