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Circ Res. 2001 Feb 16;88(3):275-81.

Vasoactive potential of the b(1) bradykinin receptor in normotension and hypertension.

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Hypertension and Atherosclerosis Section of the Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA 02118, USA.


The B(1) type receptor of bradykinin (Bk B(1)R) is believed to be physiologically inert but highly inducible by inflammatory mediators and tissue damage. To explore the potential participation of the Bk B(1)R in blood pressure (BP) regulation, we studied mice with deleted Bk B(2)R gene with induced experimental hypertension, either salt-dependent (subtotal nephrectomy with 0.5% NaCl as drinking water) or renin/angiotensin-dependent (renovascular 2-kidney-1-clip). Compared with the wild-type controls, the B(2)R gene knockout mice had a higher baseline BP (109.7+/-1.1 versus 101.1+/-1.3 mm Hg, P:=0.002), developed salt-induced hypertension faster (in 19.3+/-2.3 versus 27.7+/-2.4 days, P:=0.024), and had a more severe end point BP (148+/-3.7 versus 133+/-3.1 mm Hg, P:<0.05). On the contrary, renovascular hypertension developed to the same extent (149.7+/-4.3 versus 148+/-3.6 mm Hg) and in the same time frame (14+/-2.2 versus 14+/-2.1 days). A bolus infusion of a selective B(1)R antagonist at baseline produced a significant hypertensive response (by 11.4+/-2 mm Hg) in the knockout mice only. Injection of graded doses of a selective B(1)R agonist produced a dose-dependent hypotensive response in the knockout mice only. Assessment of tissue expression of B(1)R and B(2)R genes by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction techniques revealed significantly higher B(1)R mRNA levels in the B(2)R knockout mice at all times (normotensive baseline and hypertensive end points). At the hypertensive end points, there was always an increase in B(1)R gene expression over the baseline values. This increase was significant in cardiac and renal tissues in all hypertensive wild-type mice but only in the clipped kidney of the renovascular knockout mice. The B(2)R gene expression in the wild-type mice remained unaffected by experimental manipulations. These results confirm the known vasodilatory and natriuretic function of the Bk B(2)R; they also indicate that in its absence, the B(1)R can become upregulated and assume some of the hemodynamic properties of the B(2)R. Furthermore, they indicate that experimental manipulations to produce hypertension also induce upregulation of the B(1)R, but not the B(2)R, in cardiac and renal tissues.

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