Renal Denervation Abolishes the Age-Dependent Increase in Blood Pressure in Female Intrauterine Growth-Restricted Rats at 12 Months of Age
Perinatal insults program sex differences in blood pressure, with males more susceptible than females. Aging may augment developmental programming of chronic disease, but the mechanisms involved are not clear. We previously reported that female growth-restricted offspring are normotensive after puberty. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that age increases susceptibility to hypertension in female growth-restricted offspring. Blood pressure remained similar at 6 months of age; however, blood pressure was significantly elevated in female growth-restricted offspring relative to control by 12 months of age (137±3 vs 117±4 mm Hg; P<0.01, respectively). Body weight did not differ at 6 or 12 months of age; however, total fat mass and visceral fat were significantly increased at 12 months in female growth-restricted offspring (P<0.05 vs control). Glomerular filtration rate remained normal, yet renal vascular resistance was increased at 12 months of age in female growth-restricted offspring (P<0.05 vs control). Plasma leptin, which can increase sympathetic nerve activity, did not differ at 6 months but was increased at 12 months of age in female growth-restricted offspring (P<0.05 vs control). Because of the age-dependent increase in leptin, we hypothesized that the renal nerves may contribute to the age-dependent increase in blood pressure. Bilateral renal denervation abolished the elevated blood pressure in female growth-restricted offspring normalizing it relative to denervated female control offspring. Thus, these data indicate that age induces an increase in visceral fat and circulating leptin associated with a significant increase in blood pressure in female growth-restricted offspring, with the renal nerves serving as an underlying mechanism.
- Received November 13, 2012.
- Revision received January 28, 2013.
- Accepted January 29, 2013.
- © 2013 American Heart Association, Inc.