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J Clin Invest. 1990 Jul;86(1):169-75.

Renin release and gene expression in intact rat kidney microvessels and single cells.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Virginia, Health Sciences Center, Charlottesville 22908.


To investigate whether newborn kidney microvessels and isolated single microvascular cells have the capacity to release renin and/or alter the expression of the renin gene in response to adenylate cyclase stimulation, newborn kidney microvessels were isolated and purified (95%) using an iron perfusion/enzymatic digestion technique. Incubation of microvessels with either vehicle (control; C) or 10(-5) M forskolin (F) in media resulted in an increase in microvessel cAMP (0.67 +/- 0.13 vs. 22 +/- 4.6 pmol/min per mg protein) (P less than 0.005) and renin released into the culture media (1,026 +/- 98 vs. 1,552 +/- 159 pg angiotensin I/h per mg protein) (P = 0.008) (C vs. F). Renin mRNA levels in the newborn kidney microvessels increased 1.6-fold with forskolin treatment. Renin release by isolated, single microvascular cells (with or without forskolin) was assessed using the reverse hemolytic plaque assay. Forskolin administration resulted in an increase in the number of renin-secreting cells without changes in the amount of renin secreted by individual cells. In conclusion, newborn kidney microvessels and isolated renin-releasing microvascular cells possess a functionally active adenylate cyclase whose short-term stimulation results in accumulation of cAMP, a significant increase in renin release, and an enhancement of renin gene expression. The increase in renin release is due to recruitment of microvascular cells secreting renin. Recruitment of hormone-secreting cells in response to stimuli may prove to be a mechanism of general biological importance shared by many endocrine cell types.

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