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Curr Hypertens Rep. 2011 Feb;13(1):36-45. doi: 10.1007/s11906-010-0170-y.

Catecholamine storage vesicles: role of core protein genetic polymorphisms in hypertension.

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Department of Medicine and Institute for Genomic Medicine (IGM), University of California at San Diego School of Medicine, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093-0838, USA.


Hypertension is a complex trait with deranged autonomic control of the circulation. The sympathoadrenal system exerts minute-to-minute control over cardiac output and vascular tone. Catecholamine storage vesicles (or chromaffin granules) of the adrenal medulla contain remarkably high concentrations of chromogranins/secretogranins (or "granins"), catecholamines, neuropeptide Y, adenosine triphosphate (ATP), and Ca(2+). Within secretory granules, granins are co-stored with catecholamine neurotransmitters and co-released upon stimulation of the regulated secretory pathway. The principal granin family members, chromogranin A (CHGA), chromogranin B (CHGB), and secretogranin II (SCG2), may have evolved from shared ancestral exons by gene duplication. This article reviews human genetic variation at loci encoding the major granins and probes the effects of such polymorphisms on blood pressure, using twin pairs to probe heritability and individuals with the most extreme blood pressure values in the population to study hypertension.

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